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Train crash toll rises to 63 in eastern India

By Harmeet Shah Singh, CNN
Indian rescue personnel work at the scene of the railway accident on Monday.
Indian rescue personnel work at the scene of the railway accident on Monday.
  • The number of wounded also rises - to 94
  • The government will pay more than $10,500 to each victim's family
  • The wreck occurred when a moving train rammed into a stationary one
  • The cause of the crash is not known

New Delhi, India (CNN) -- The death toll from Monday's train collision in eastern India has risen to 63, officials said Tuesday.

Authorities in the Birbhum district of West Bengal, where the crash occurred, also revised the number of injured passengers to at least 94.

Indian railway minister Mamata Banerjee has announced financial assistance of about $10,575 to each victim's family, and about $2,115 to every seriously wounded passenger.

District administrator Saumitra Mohan told CNN that emergency crews have cleared wreckage from the railroad.

Early Monday, a moving train ploughed into a stationary train at Sainthia station at Birbhum.

Video: India train crash probe
  • India

The powerful rear-ender flung the roof of one of the rammed compartments onto an overpass, television footage showed.

Rescuers used gas-powered tools similar to blowtorches to free travelers trapped inside the mangled coaches of the Vananchal Express. Giant cranes then pulled twisted metal from the tracks.

Authorities have ordered an investigation to determine what caused the crash.

India's massive rail network is marred by a poor safety record. At least 100 train crashes were recorded in the 2009-2010 fiscal year and 115 in 2008-2009.

Officials have identified human error as a major culprit in train wrecks.