Some depart the city in search of family with optimism.

CHENNAI: Umesh Kumar Singh, who appeared emaciated and was wearing a t-shirt, sat contemplatively on the Chennai Central-Bhadrak Express. The Coromandel Express was carrying his brother Mukesh, who Umesh was concerned about. “I got a call from him last night, but since my phone was on silent I did not notice. I called him again at 6am and was shocked to learn that he was injured in the accident,” Umesh said.Umesh and five other passengers were on the special train that departed from Dr. MGR Chennai Central for Bhadrak at around 7.20pm on Saturday. Everyone was riding on S 1 coach. There was a sizable crowd on platform four since additional people were permitted to purchase tickets for this train. Umesh was brought to the S 1 compartment by policemen while many people fought for space in the general compartment and some attempted to enter through the emergency window. He continued, saying, “Mukesh has been admitted to the hospital; his legs are broken. He was a contract worker in Chennai and resided at Wallajah Road.” A little distance away, Sunil Kamath and his brother Anil Kamath were nervously waiting to board the crowded compartment. “We have not been able to get in touch with our niece’s husband, 30-year-old Shankar Kamath, who had gone there for a wedding and was headed back to Chennai,” said Sunil Kamath. “I came from Delhi after hearing about this. Exactly at 7.20 p.m., the special train chugged out of the station as senior railway officials and police officers stood on the platform with volunteers who had come to distribute food to people leaving to check on their relatives. “The coordination was good in Chennai, but I am not sure how it would be there,” he said.

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