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Overspeeding trains ran over elephants: Bengal minister

Jalpaiguri, West Bengal: The death of six elephants in Jalpaiguri district happened due to overspeeding of the trains, West Bengal Forest Minister Hiten Barman said today.

On Wednesday, a herd of around 40 pachyderms was crossing the railway tracks inside the Chapramari wildlife sanctuary, when a Guwahati-bound passenger train hit them, killing six elephants.

Sad death. PTI

Sad death. PTI

"The accident occurred as the train was travelling at a speed more than the speed limit prescribed in this elephant corridor," Barman said.

"Series of meetings are being held with the railway officials to control the speed of trains but accidents are happening as the trains are violating the speed limit," the minister said.

State forest and railway officials held meeting in Jalpaiguri this afternoon to discuss ways and means to prevent accidents.

The railway officials claimed that the speed limit in this particular stretch was not declared as an elephant corridor.

Meanwhile, people blocked the railway tracks and stopped the Haldibari-New Jalpaiguri passenger train at Jalpaiguri station to protest the death of the elephants.

PTI