Vande Bharat Express: India’s fastest engine-less Train 18 now will now have a special team to protect its windows from stone pelting. The 180 kmph capable Vande Bharat Express, which runs on the Delhi-Varanasi route, has been damaged multiple times by incidents of stone pelting. According to a TOI report, Indian Railways, under its new plan, has recently set up special teams comprising government railway police (GRP) and railway protection force (RPF) personnel in order to track the miscreants pelting stones at Vande Bharat Express. Plain-clothes team members from police force would interact with the villagers where multiple stone pelting attacks on Train 18 have occurred in the past. The very first incident of stone pelting on Train 18 took place in the month of December 2018 when the window glass of a coach had been severely damaged.
Himanshu Kumar, SP, Railways, Allahabad was quoted in the report saying that it has been decided to keep a close watch in areas from Kanpur to Varanasi and once caught, the miscreants would be prosecuted under suitable sections of CrPC, namely sections 107 and 116. However, the action will be stringent if one repeats the crime. The special teams will be conducting raids randomly so that miscreants can be caught unprepared.
Meanwhile, a senior ICF official told Financial Express Online that in the new Train 18 set, special frames will be used in the train windows to make the glass ‘shatter-proof’. According to an ICF official, the new Train 18 or Vande Bharat Express rake will be ready for roll-out in April. Talking about the special steps taken by Indian Railways in order to protect passengers in the train from such incidents, the official told Financial Express Online that the new frames will be fitted in the windows which will make the glass resilient and ‘shatter-proof’.
While the glass can still break in case the train is hit by stones while running at a higher speed, the new frames will ensure that the glass does not shatter and hurt the passengers inside. From the third Train 18 rake, instead of frames, shatter-proof, laminated glass will be fitted by ICF, Chennai.