Mumbai, Sept 29: The Railway Ministry has approved the construction of an additional foot over-bridge at Elphinstone Road station in Mumbai, an official told news agency ANI on Friday after a stampede that claimed 22 lives. An Accidental Death Report (ADR), under section 174 of CRPC, has been registered at Dadar Police Station to probe the stampede incident. The ministry sanctioned Rs 9.5 crore for the construction of an additional foot over-bridge at Elphinstone Road station. A tender had been floated in this regard, said the official. Elphinstone Road station is a busy hub for local train commuters in Mumbai as a large number of offices are located in the area.
At least 22 people died and more than 30 were seriously injured on Friday in a stampede on the foot over-bridge linking Elphinstone Road and Parel stations. After the accident, Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal reached Mumbai to take stock of the situation and announced that his ministry and the Maharashtra Government will give Rs. five lakh as ex gratia to each of the families of the 22 deceased who had lost their lives in the stampede.
A high-level enquiry headed by the Chief Safety Officer of Western Railways has been ordered. “I have ordered a high-level enquiry headed by the Chief Safety Officer of Western Railways. The team will inquire about the matter and ascertain the cause of the incident,” Piyush Goyal told ANI.
Though the exact cause of the stampede was not known, many claimed that a sudden rumour of a suspected electrical short-circuits triggered the stampede. Officials, however, blamed it on overcrowding on the foot over-bridge due to torrential rains as people took shelter there and the arrival of four trains at the same time.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Ramnath Kovind and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed grief over the death in the incident. Meanwhile, Fadnavis also announced Rs. 5 lakh for the next of the kin of deceased and all the medical expenses of the injured will be borne by Government of Maharashtra. “Saddened and shocked to know about the tragic stampede at #Elphinstone railway station, foot over bridge (sic),” Fadnavis wrote on Twitter.