The Maoists blew up railway tracks in Jharkhand’s Giridih district affecting train services on the busy Grand Chord Dhanbad division for seven hours, an official said on Tuesday.
On Monday at around 10.45 pm, the insurgents detonated a bomb on the tracks of the Chauribandh station situated between Parasnath and Hazaribagh Road, Chief Public Relation Officer of North Eastern Railway Rajesh Kumar told this reporter over phone.
The insurgents had called for a shutdown in five districts to protest the death penalty given to two Maoists accused of killing Pakur Superintendent of Police Amarjeet Balihar.
Around two feet of the railway track was damaged and the signalling system stopped functioning.
Six trains at different stations had to be halted. The railway services resumed at 4.30 a.m., Rajesh Kumar said.
The blast could have led to a major accident, but it was averted due to the alertness of railway staff Mubarak Hussain and Chandra Kumar, Railways Director (Media) Rajesh Dutt Bajpai in New Delhi told this reporter.
“Both were on night patrol. The moment they heard the blast they immediately alerted the Assistant Station Manager (ASM) who prevented an approaching goods train from progressing on the damaged tracks,” Bajpai said.
Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani has decided to award Hussain and Kumar on Wednesday at a ceremony in the national capital.