Reports said that the effigy was being burnt near the railway track when the accident took place. There were reportedly around 700 people at the accident spot. A crowd of around 300 people was watching Ravan effigy burn when the local passenger train hit the people standing on the track watching the effigy of Ravan burn about 200 feet away, said senior police officer Lakhbir Singh. Around 50 injured have been admitted to a government hospital, Sharma said.
There are fears that the death toll will rise further.
Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu reacted to reports that his wife was the chief guest at the event. Meanwhile, Revenue Minister Sukhbinder Sarkaria has also been asked to report to Amritsar to monitor the rescue operations.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh announced compensation of Rs five lakh each to the kin of the deceased in the Amritsar train accident and said he was rushing to the spot to personally supervise rescue and relief operations. Minister Rajnath Singh has tweeted that all support from the central government would be given in this hour of grief.
Extremely saddened by the train accident in Amritsar. "My deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their loved ones and I pray that the injured recover quickly", he said in a tweet. They crowded the rail track on the outskirts of Amritsar, a city in Punjab state. He said he asked officials concerned to provide immediate assistance.