Will Indian Railways start fencing tracks along crowded areas to prevent accidents?

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Published: October 25, 2018 4:32:15 PM

According to official data, over the last three years, around 50,000 people lost their lives after being hit by trains. However, the national transporter takes no responsibility for these deaths and term such people 'trespassers'.

As per section 147 of Indian Railways Act, trespassing is a punishable offence with jail term of around 6 months along with fine.

Indian Railways’ train journeys to become safer! Recently, the Government Railway Police pitched for fencing railway tracks along crowded areas in a bid to avoid train accidents, in the aftermath of the Amritsar tragedy in which as many as 59 people were mowed down by a train. The proposal of fencing railway tracks along crowded areas was made during a meeting of the heads of Government Railway Police (GRP). The GRP is a state police force, which is responsible for maintaining law and order in the railways across 21 states. A senior official, who attended the meeting was quoted in a PTI report saying that in view of the Amritsar incident, GRP will write to the Railway Ministry proposing that fences be built along the tracks where areas are crowded.

According to official data, over the last three years, around 50,000 people lost their lives after being hit by trains. However, the national transporter takes no responsibility for these deaths and term such people ‘trespassers’.

As per section 147 of Indian Railways Act, trespassing is a punishable offence with jail term of around 6 months along with fine. The GRP collates zone-wise data on such deaths. The official also said that while the meeting of the heads of GRP takes place every year, they last met in the year 2016. This year, till last month as many as 1,20,923 people were arrested and prosecuted by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) for intruding the railway system. According to data provided by the railways, a total fine of Rs 2.94 crore was imposed on them by courts during the period. Last year, the RPF arrested and prosecuted 1,75,996 people for trespassing the railway system and Rs 4.35 crore fine was imposed on them.

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According to sources quoted in the report, last year, Indian Railways was considering a proposal to construct concrete walls along crowded railway tracks not just to stop trespassing but also to keep the railway tracks clean. However, the plan is yet to materialise, mainly because of lack of funds, they added.

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