New Delhi, Jul 11 : CPI-M today criticised the UPA government for the “spate” of railway accidents, saying the department suffered “acute neglect” due to political reasons and also demanded an explanation from the Prime Minister on how this “shocking state of affairs” was allowed to go on. The party also sought a high-level probe into the series of train mishaps in the recent past.
“In the last two years, the Railways have been on a disastrous path under the stewardship of former Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee. It has suffered acute neglect and was used for the political ends of the Minister in West Bengal. As a result, more than one lakh safety related jobs in the railways are lying vacant,” the CPI(M) Politburo said in a statement here.
“In the UPA government, no one is held accountable for this dereliction of duty. The Prime Minister should explain how this shocking state of affairs was allowed to go on. There can be no compulsions of coalition politics when the lives of the people are at stake,” it said.
Expressing deep shock at the “horrific” accident in Fatehpur, it said this came just three days after another express train hit a bus at an unmanned crossing at Adhurpur in UP killing 38 persons. It also referred to the “suspected sabotage” in derailing of the Guwahati-Puri Express in Assam.
“All these (incidents) highlight the perils faced by passengers on the railways,” the CPI(M) said. Maintaining that it was “not enough to have an enquiry conducted by the Railways” into the Kalka Mail accident, it demanded the constitution of “a high-level enquiry into the spate of railway accidents and immediate steps to strengthen the safety measures in the railways”.
Shocked over the two rail incidents, CPI demanded a judicial probe into such accidents and said it showed the deterioration in railway safety and neglect of track maintenance.
“The government and specially the Railways have to give serious attention to these vital problems. A judicial probe should immediately be ordered in both the incidents,” a CPI statement said. PTI