Train crash in Pakistan kills 11, injures dozens - GulfToday

20 dead, 79 injured as trains collide in Punjab

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Residents and rescue workers gather near the site after a passenger train collided with a cargo train in Sadiqabad. Reuters

Tariq Butt

A passenger train rammed into a freight train in southern Pakistan on Thursday, killing at least 19 people and injuring 64 others, an official said.
The freight train was stationary when the speeding passenger train hit it at Walhar Railway Station in Rahim Yar Khan, in the eastern Punjab province. According to a senior government official, Jamil Ahmed, hospitals declared an emergency and were receiving casualties from the collision.

Ahmed said some of the injured passengers were listed in critical condition.

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A Pakistani rescuer carries an injured passenger at the site of train accident in Rahim Yar Khan district in Pakistan on Thursday. AFP


Prime Minister Imran Khan quickly ordered authorities to provide best possible medical care to the victims. In a statement, he said he was saddened by the news.

Khan ordered Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad to "take emergency steps to counter decades of neglect of railway infrastructure" and ensure safety standards.

Authorities said Pakistan's army was also taking part in the rescue efforts.

"Have asked Railways Minister to take emergency steps to counter decades of neglect of railway infrastructure and ensure safety standards.

Train accidents are common in Pakistan mainly because of poor railway infrastructure and negligence of railway authorities.

Prime Minister Imran Khan issued a statement of condolence in which he blamed the infrastructure of Pakistan's colonial-era railway network which has fallen into disrepair due to chronic under-investment and poor maintenance.

"Have asked Railways Minister to take emergency steps to counter decades of neglect of railway infrastructure and ensure safety standards," Khan tweeted.

Last month, six people were killed when a freight train collided with a passenger train in Hyderabad 165 km (100 miles) from Karachi.

The cause of Thursday's crash is under investigation but Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed said human error was believed to be responsible.

"I have ordered an inquiry. Investigation will complete in two-three days," he told Geo Television.

The minister also announced compensation for the dead and injured.

Agencies