At least 47 passengers died and 25 others injured as a fire broke out in one of the coaches of the Tamil Nadu Express at Nellore in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh Monday morning, local TV channels reported.
The train was going to the south Indian city of Chennai from the capital city of New Delhi.
The fire, reportedly caused by a short circuit in the coach (S-11), was noticed at 4:30 a.m. when the train was passing through the Nellore railway station. There were 72 passengers in the coach and most of them were sleeping.
The train was immediately stopped and the fire brigade extinguished the fire.
"The fire spread fast and the passengers could not come out through one of the doors because of the fire. So the other edge of the coach was to be used. Some people could come out and others succumbed to death," Nellore district collector B Sridhar was quoted as saying by the Indian media.
The coach was completely gutted and many of the bodies were charred beyond identification, Sridhar said.
The injured were admitted to the nearby hospitals and the death toll could rise since some of them are in serious condition.
The government ordered an inquiry into accident. Railway Minister Mukul Roy asked the Commissioner of Railway Safety of South-Central Circle, D K Singh, to look into the cause of the accident.
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