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Stone pelting on 'Astha Special' train from Surat to Ayodhya: Devotee shares experience (WATCH)

The Astha Special train (09053), which was flagged off from Surat by Union Minister of State for Railways and Surat BJP MP Darshana Jardosh, carried 1,344 passengers across 22 coaches.

Stone pelting on 'Astha Special' train from Surat to Ayodhya: Devotee shares experience (WATCH) snt
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First Published Feb 12, 2024, 8:01 PM IST

A disturbing incident unfolded on Sunday night as the Ayodhya-bound Astha Special train, departing from Surat, was reportedly targeted with stones near Nandurbar in Maharashtra. Fortunately, no injuries were reported during the episode, but the railway police have initiated a complaint against unidentified individuals involved in the case.

The Astha Special train (09053), which was flagged off from Surat by Union Minister of State for Railways and Surat BJP MP Darshana Jardosh, carried 1,344 passengers across 22 coaches. Sources revealed that the train was reserved for members of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Ram Pratishtha workers from Surat.

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In an interview with Indian Express, Jardosh expressed concern over the incident and highlighted that authorities are actively investigating the matter. The train embarked from Surat railway station at 8 pm, and passengers sensed trouble when they felt stones being hurled at the train near Nandurbar railway station around 10:45 pm. Promptly, passengers alerted Railway Police Force (RPF) officials about the distressing situation.

Upon reaching Nandurbar railway station in Maharashtra, RPF teams immediately began recording statements from passengers regarding the incident. After thorough scrutiny, the train was permitted to resume its journey to Ayodhya.

TS Banerjee, the assistant security commissioner of Surat (RPF), addressed the issue, stating that they received reports about the stone pelting incident on the Astha train. He further added that RPF officials from Nandurbar are actively conducting investigations, and they are awaiting updates from them.

Speaking to OpIndia, Nilesh Akbari, the Vishva Hindu Parishad's Surat chief and journey coordinator, shed light on the incident, stating that stones were hurled at coaches S7, S11, and S12 before reaching Nandurbar Station. Akbari emphasized that the devotees remained steadfast in their resolve, despite the cowardly attack by anti-social elements who took advantage of the darkness.

“The train reached Nandurbar Station at around 9:45 PM. Before reaching the station, stones were pelted at coaches S7, S11 and S12. Stones entered in the S7 coach," he said.

“When the train reached Nandurbar Station, we informed GRP about the incident. Police swung into action and initiated an investigation into the matter. The train halted for a while and continued its journey," he added.

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