मुंबई Mumbai: The Railway Protection Force (RPF) unit of Central Railway took the fight against ticket touts a notch higher. It has filed an application in the CST metropolitan court to attach the properties of an alleged tout who has been evading arrest since a racket was busted way back in March this year.
The RPF made an application under Sections 82 (pertaining to declaring a person an absconder) and Section 83 (attachment of property) of the Criminal Procedural Code (CrPC) with the CST railway court against alleged tout Shamsher Khan.
The March raid, carried out after two months of surveillance by CR’s commercial and vigilance departments, was the first time the RPF confiscated software that was speeding up ticket bookings on the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) website. Among those arrested in the raid, apart from a couple of Dharavi-based touts, was a collegian running a communications shop in Ghatkopar.
Investigations into the racket showed that Khan, who was supplying the software to other touts, in the process created a cartel of agents who were cornering seats on IRCTC website. This software has since become defunct thanks to the IRCTC adding new security to its online booking system.
“He has been elusive for a long time and the RPF teams that went to his native village in Gonda district of Uttar Pradesh also returned empty-handed. His custody is required to throw more light on the racket,” said an RPF official.
Railway authorities who for long took touting cases lightly, despite it being one of the biggest peeves of bonafide passengers fighting for a seat during peak travelling seasons, have now started waking up to the issue. Even in the recent case of automation software being used to corner tickets on IRCTC, the bank details of all the 12 arrested touts are being collected to freeze their accounts.