Mysuru railway needs 700 security staff, has just 370

Sep 13, 2017

MYSURU: The railway authorities and the railway minister keep saying that their priority is passenger safety. But in reality, due to the lack of security, not only the passengers, but also ticket checking staff who travel on train are prone to risk.
Most trains do not have securitypersonnel on board. Sleeper trains like Mysuru-Dharwad Express and Swarna Jayanthi Express have escorts, unlike Tipu Express and Chamundi Express. Also, the escorts are seen only during special drives. Though there are sanctioned RPF personnel in Mysuru division, it does not meet the requirement of the present crowd. The posts were sanctioned based trains and the number of passengers in 2001, when only a very few trains originated from Mysuru.
Now, there are 48 trains running from Mysuru to different places, and they include weekly trains too. To Bengaluru alone, there are 24 trains everyday, with each ferrying more than thousands of passengers.

The absence of security personnel puts passengers and ticket checking staff at risk. When the ticket checking staff ask for tickets, anti-social elements behave rudely and even threaten them.

On Sunday, a robber pushed a ticket checking staff out of a moving train. The drama unfolded when the staff member tried to hand over the unruly traveller after he was caught robbing a cellphone.

Speaking to TOI, Prakash Kumar Panda, divisional security commissioner, South Western Railway (Mysuru division), said: “The present 370 posts were sanctioned based on number of trains and passengers in 2001. Now, there are more trains and more passengers. To meet the present requirement, we need around 700 RPF personnel. The decision in this regard should be taken up by the railway board. Mysuru division covers nearly 370km, involving Hubballi, Mangaluru and Chamarajanagar. Over the past year, we have increased escorts on 16-20 trains. We have also started night operation drive, wherein we get feedback from passengers. Every year, we receive 10-15 cases.”