GRP questions four passengers over TTE’s death

Mantralayam Road (MALM): A TTE died under suspicious circumstances while on duty at Mantralayam Road Railway station in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh and four passengers are being questioned by GRP over the death.

The death of Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE) Sanjeeva Rao (57) triggered protests by railway employees at Secunderabad and other stations in Kurnool as it was initially alleged that he died following assault by some rail passengers of Chennai-Shirdi Express train, GRP officials said today.

However, based on preliminary investigation, the GRP said he died around midnight yesterday after collapsing on the platform of the station due to “cardiac arrest,” though they were also questioning passengers Vamsi Krishna, Ambarish and two others in connection with the incident.

According to a senior GRP official, some passengers of an AC coach on the train had a verbal duel with the TTE over lack of water and supply of “dirty” blankets. They also argued with him for “behaving in an arrogant manner rather than addressing their grievances.”

As Rao was in plain clothes, the passengers argued with him that he had unauthorisedly entered the AC coach and when the train reached the Mantralayam Road station, they complained to the Deputy Station Manager regarding this.

The Deputy Station Manager summoned Sanjeeva Rao who replied that he was asked to join the duty at the eleventh hour in Dharmavaram of Anantapur district and hence he could not wear the uniform. The manager cross checked this with higher railway officials and found the TTE’s version correct.

In the meanwhile, Rao, who was sitting on a chair suddenly collapsed on the ground and fell unconscious even as a railway doctor who examined him pronounced him dead, the GRP official explained.

“We have booked a case of suspicious death under 174 CrPC and picked up four passengers as part of investigation. We are probing into the matter through medical and circumstantial evidences,” he said, adding no evidence was found into reports that the TTE was beaten up by passengers.

Meanwhile, a release from South Central Railway said Sanjeeva’s body was handed over to his family members after postmortem. The exact cause of death can be ascertained only from the postmortem report, it said.

The railways also appealed the passengers not to put “undue” pressure or behave harshly towards the onboard railway staff, especially the TTEs.

K. Sambasiva Rao, Chief Public Relations Officer, South Central Railway, Secunderabad, appealed to passengers to use the number 81212-81212 to send messages and get their grievance redressed. This facility he said, was tested and messages would be acted upon, by a senior official who would pass it on to the concerned for redressal.