India railway failings 'like massacre'

Train accident in Bengal India's railway safety record is patchy

Related Stories

Lax safety standards on India's railway lines have caused thousands of deaths, a government committee has said, calling the deaths a "massacre".

The committee said 15,000 people are killed by trains every year trying to cross tracks that are not fenced off.

Almost half of the deaths occur in Mumbai, where the report said there were not enough pedestrian crossings.

The report criticised state-owned railway network India Railways for failing to implement safety measures.

It called for urgent investment to prevent the "unacceptable massacre".

The BBC's Rajesh Joshi in Delhi says that the report has come down heavily on Indian Railways. It argues that no civilised society can accept such high casualty levels.

The group of experts on the committee noted that Indian Railways is reluctant to acknowledge the deaths as train accidents.

But it has emphasised they were accidents and that they were caused by trains.

The government appointed the group of experts to review railway safety measures in the face of a growing number of casualties in recent years.

The committee, headed by one of the country's foremost scientists, Anil Kakodkar, says people cross railway tracks unlawfully because there are not enough foot bridges provided.

Another contributory factor is inadequate fencing adjacent to the tracks.

The committee has recommended that a high-level task force - involving state governments and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) - should be set up to address the issue.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More India stories

RSS

Features

  • RihannaCloud caution

    After celebrity leaks, what can you do to safeguard your photos?


  • Cesc FabregasFair price?

    Have some football clubs overpaid for their new players?


  • Woman and hairdryerBlow back

    Would banning high-power appliances actually save energy?


  • Rack of lambFavourite feast

    Is the UK unusually fond of lamb and potatoes?


  • Members of staff at James Stevenson Flags hold a Union Jack and Saltire flag UK minus Scotland

    Does the rest of the UK care if the Scots become independent?


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.