By: Rohith Gutta
June 5 2023
The visual shows rescue operations following the derailment of the Bengaluru-Ernakulam intercity near Anekal in Karnataka in 2015.
A massive collision between two passenger trains and a goods train in the Balasore district of Odisha on June 2, 2023, killed at least 275 people and left hundreds injured. Shortly after rescue operations began in Balasore near the site of the incident, Twitter user ‘SG Suryah’, who describes himself as an RSS Swamsewak, tweeted a photo with the claim that “25 RSS volunteers are involved in relief efforts at the Odisha Balasore accident site under the RSS district co-ordinator Mr. Vishnu.” The Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) describes itself as a “cultural organization” and is the parent body of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The image Suryah shared from his verified account shows a train where coaches were delinked from each other and people involved in rescue efforts.
A reverse image search of the photo revealed that the photo was of a train derailment that took place in Karnataka in 2015. According to a report in The Hindu, Train No. 12677 from Bengaluru to Ernakulam derailed at Belagondapalli, near Anekal, on the outskirts of Bengaluru at 7:35 a.m. on February 13, 2015. Two coaches of this train derailed, resulting in the death of 10 people.
A photo report by The Indian Express published on February 13, 2015, shows the rescue efforts underway after the accident. We can see the rescuers with yellow helmets trying to enter the derailed coaches. The same can be seen in the photo shared by the Twitter user. Additionally, in the photo shared by the Twitter user, we can see a number on a coach, possibly the identification number of the coach, ending with 3620. The photo story of The Indian Express captured the number of the coach as 93620, making the possibility that the two coaches are the same very high.
While the photo shared by the Twitter user shows only one train, three trains were involved in the accident in Odisha; two among them are passenger trains and the other a freight train. While the Bengaluru-Ernakulam train is blue in color, the passenger trains involved in the Odisha accident are light green and red in color. While one among them is Coromandel Express, the other is SVT Bengaluru-Howrah Super Fast Express. The viral photo shows no other train. This proves that the photo shared by the user is not that of the Odisha train accident. While Logically Facts cannot verify whether RSS volunteers or workers were involved in the rescue operations in Balasore, the viral photo claiming they were there is unrelated to the recent train accident.
A photo of rescue efforts following a train derailment on the outskirts of Bengaluru in 2015 has been shared as a visual of RSS rescue efforts after the train accident in Balasore, Odisha in 2023. Therefore, we mark this claim false.