Regulator Irdai has asked insurers to proactively process claims of kins of the deceased or persons injured in the train accident in Balasore, Odisha. The train accident in Balasore involving Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express and Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express, which were carrying over 2,500 passengers, and goods train laden with iron ore occurred at around 7 pm on Friday near the Bahanaga Bazar station in Balasore. As many as 21 coaches were derailed and severely damaged in the accident, trapping hundreds of passengers.
The accident, one of the worst train tragedies in the country, claimed 278 lives and left more than 1,100 people injured.
In a circular to insurers, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) said the recent train accident has caused immense loss of human lives and injuries to a thousand passengers and train crew members.
There is an urgent need for the insurance industry to take immediate steps to mitigate the hardships of the affected insured population by ensuring immediate registration and settlement of eligible claims, it said.
Asking insurers to initiate immediate steps for quick registration and disposal of claims, the circular said: “Claims shall be processed proactively, if the insured name is in the list of deceased or injured persons, and was travelling in the trains which met with an accident as identified by the appropriate/Govt authorities”.
Life and general insurance companies and stand-alone health insurers have also been asked to designate a dedicated helpline under the supervision of a senior officer who would act as a nodal officer for the affected people.
“The nodal officer would be coordinating the receipt, processing and settlement of all eligible claims,” the regulator said.
Irdai also asked them to create awareness about the simplified process to file a claim to enable the public to file the claims at the nearest branches or online.