Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had announced on Sunday evening that a CBI probe had been recommended into the accident.
Slamming the government, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said, ”Even before the Commissioner of Railway Safety has submitted his report on Balasore train disaster, a CBI inquiry is announced.” This is nothing but headlines management having failed to meet deadlines, he said on Twitter.
Ramesh also raised the issue of the 2016 Kanpur rail accident in which 150 lives were lost, and noted that the NIA has is yet to come out with its report.
”Ab yeh Chronology yaad kijiye – 1. Nov 20, 2016: Indore-Patna Express derails near Kanpur. Over 150 people lose their lives. 2. Jan 23, 2017: Then Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu writes to Union Home Minister asking for NIA probe into this accident. ”3. Feb 24, 2017: PM says Kanpur train accident is a conspiracy. 4. Oct 21, 2018: Newspapers report NIA will NOT file any chargesheet in the derailment. 5: June 6, 2023: Still no OFFICIAL news on NIA final report on Kanpur derailment. Zero accountability!” Ramesh said.
Ramesh’s attack comes a day after Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying the probe agency is meant to investigate crimes, not railway accidents, and cannot fix accountability for technical, institutional and political failures.
The crash on Friday last involving two passenger trains and a goods train killed 275 people and injured more than 1,100, while the movement of goods and passenger trains on the busy route was also disrupted.