Train Wreck in India

Author: Rev. Timothy Tin

On the evening of June 2nd, three trains derailed in India, causing almost 288 deaths and more than 1,000 injuries. According to a BBC report, this was this century’s most devastating train collision.

India has the world’s largest railway network, with a total distance of over 100,000 kilometres or 62,000 miles, which measures around 1.5 times the earth’s circumference. Over 25 million daily riders utilize this massive rail network. Since this was built in the 18th century while colonial India was under British rule, much of its infrastructure requires frequent maintenance and updates to prevent serious incidents. However, a derailment in 1995 caused a death toll of 350; fast forward to 2010 in West Bengal: a passenger train derailed and collided with a freight train, causing 150 deaths. Before 2017, over 100 passengers were killed in rail-related accidents. According to the June 4th edition of the New York Times, between 2021 and 2022, there were 34 incidents, including collisions, derailments, fire, explosions, collisions with other vehicles, or collisions with other trains in intersections. It was an increase of 27 incidents compared to the prior year’s records.

Though derailments are common in India, the government is trying to improve the aging and massive railway network. Since Modi became President, over one hundred million dollars have been spent to upgrade the rail infrastructure, leading to a world record of zero deaths in 2022. Moreover, parties responsible for derailment would be heavily charged. So what was the cause of these accidents? The initial finding was: a malfunction of signal lights. According to Vivek Sahai, a transportation and management expert, derailments are headaches. A 2019-2020 report states that derailments make up 70% of all rail-related accidents.

As we witnessed the devastation of the derailment of the 2000 passengers, let’s think about our lives as a high-speed train on rails. We should arrive at the desired station as long as we remain on the “railway of truth” without swaying and avoiding wrong signals. We lay our foundation at a young age to stay on track by learning knowledge and skills and putting morality and conscience into practice. Yet life is not as smooth as we think: Evils can damage the paths of life, and the devils might give deceptive signals to cause our “derailments and deaths” because “we all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6). When we were led astray off the tracks, God sent Jesus His only Son to die for us on the cross. Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

Do you feel like flowing aimlessly in the ocean with no end in sight? Pray to God and ask Him to help you:

“Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for letting me see the devastation of derailment and being astray from the truth. Help me receive God’s gift of salvation. Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, I can now walk the path of righteousness and eternity. In His name, I pray, Amen.”


Author: Rev. (Dr.) Timothy Tin is the lead pastor of the Christian Alliance Bible Church in L.A.. Rev. Tin serves on the Board of Director in the International Fellowship of Christian Short-Term Missions and Presence Quotient. Rev. Tin is currently teaching at USA Christian Mission Seminary. He holds practitioner’s licenses in acupuncture in Southern CA and NACCAOM in the US. Rev. Tin received his Master’s in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from Alhambra Medical University, Master of Longevity Martial arts and Doctoral degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from the University of East-West Medicine. Rev. Tin is a frequent speaker in many churches and nonprofit organizations.