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Mob burns Bihar railway station, trains

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Thousands of villagers, angry over withdrawal of stoppage of the Rajgir-New Delhi at Khusrupur railway station in Bihar, today ransacked and torched the station and two trains and uprooted tracks under Danapur division, about 32 kms from here.

Irate villagers stormed the station building, situated on the Patna-Rajgir section under Danapur division of the East Central Railway, as soon as it was announced over the public address system that the stoppage of the Shramajivi Express had been withdrawn, ECR chief public relations officer said.

The mob set fire to the 3226 down Danapur-Jainagar Intercity Express and the 543 Rajgir-Danapur passenger trains at Baikatpur village near the station, he said.

Four general chair car coaches and an air-conditioned chair car compartment of Danapur-Jainagar Intercity Express were burnt, Chandra said. The mob also set afire a generator bogie of the Rajgir-Danapur passenger train, which arrived there a short while after the intercity train reached.

The agitators also uprooted several metres of railway lines in the division. Fire tenders fought for hours to douse the flames, he added.

The mob also destroyed several electronic and other kinds of railway equipment, the signal system and the ticket booking counter, Chandra said. Senior railway and police officials have reached the spot and patrolling was intensified as tension ran high in the area.

Chandra said the ECR had ordered review of its earlier order related to withdrawal of stoppage of Shramajivi Express at Khusrupur station, besides several other trains at newly-created halts. “We will examine the commercial viability of the halts before deciding on the subject of discontinuing stoppages of important trains creating enough hurdles in the smooth running of super fast trains,” he said.

Several trains bound for Howrah, Rajgir, Darbhanga and Saharsa have been detained at different railway stations.

The officials were trying to pacify the agitators promising that the withdrawal of the stoppage of trains at Khusrupur stood “temporarily cancelled”. “We will be reviewing the stoppages on a priority basis,” he said.

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