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Indian train hits crowd on tracks

February 28, 2008

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At least 16 people have been killed in western India after a high-speed train ran into them, railway officials say. The victims were hit by the train as they walked in the dark on the tracks near Surat in Gujarat state.

Their bodies were spotted by the driver of another train, police said. Several women and children were among the dead, who were reported to be labourers.

Accidents are common on India’s busy state-run rail system, especially at the many unmanned road crossings.

The victims were crossing unguarded rail tracks on foot when a train ploughed into them, police inspector HM Patel was quoted by news agency AFP as saying.

The victims were migrant workers and their families from the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, Mr Patel said.

More than 13m passengers are carried every day on the rail network – one of the world’s largest but also one of the most dangerous.

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