Over 250 passengers have been rescued, a railway official said. The Railway Ministry has ordered an inquiry into the twin train derailments and compensation for the families of the victims.

"Twenty nine bodies, including those of 13 men, 11 women and five children, have been recovered so far from the mishap site between Khirkiya and Harda, about 160 kms from Bhopal," Madhya Pradesh government spokesman Anupam Rajan told reporters, adding that the toll could further go up.

However, Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Bhopal, Alok Kumar stated, "Eleven passengers of Janata Express and one from Kamayani Express were found dead. About rest, we are not sure whether they were villagers or some other persons."    

Though the state government said 21 coaches of the two trains derailed, the DRM cited seven bogies of the Janata Express plus engine and 10 of Kamayani Express derailed. According to Central Railway PRO Piyush Mathur, seven coaches of Kamayani Express, heading from Mumbai to Varanasi, and three bogies and the engine of the Rajendra Nagar-Mumbai Janata Express derailed at 11 PM last night.

"Nearly 25 passengers suffered injuries," he stated. Making a suo motu statement on the incident in Parliament, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said track washout due to a swollen Machak river led to the derailment of the two trains.

Commissioner Railway Safety (Central Zone) will conduct an inquiry into the accidents, Railway Spokesperson Anil Saxena cited. He added though prime facie flash floods led to the derailment of the two trains, the real cause will be ascertained after submission of the inquiry report.

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