Rights panel seeks report on unmanned level crossings

The NHRC has directed the chairman of the Railway Board to submit a report over the issue of manning unmanned-level crossings, the virtual death traps.

It also sought an additional report from the Divisional Railway Manager, Sambalpur over the developments in the case of an accident that had occurred at an unmanned level-crossing at Khairapalli. Supreme Court lawyer and rights activist Radhakanta Tripathy, who filed a petition in this regard on September 27, 2012, sought the Commission’s intervention and appropriate action.

In his complaint, he alleged that on account of the failure of the railway administration in manning the level-crossings accidents occur across the country. He referred to the incident of August 24, 2012, wherein two minor girls and 12 others were killed in a railway accident at Khairapally un-manned level crossing in Odisha.  He further alleged that the accidents at unmanned railway crossing frequently occur and compensation has never been paid by the railway administration to the victims in such cases.

The complainant had requested the NHRC to direct the railway authorities to compensate the family members of the deceased and the injured and to make proper arrangements like a subway or a foot-over bridge at unmanned railway crossings.