RPF to deploy Mobile Bunkers to secure Railway Stations

NEW DELHI: The Railway Protection Force (RPF) plans to deploy mobile bunkers at major railway stations to tackle terrorist attacks.

RPF officials of the Central Railway (CR), said to begin with six mobile bunkers will be deployed at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus and Lokmanya Tilak Terminus. Sachin Balode, senior Divisional Security Commissioner, CR, said, mobile bunkers will replace the existing bunkers made of sandbags placed at the entrance to the stations.

An RPF official said, “The existing bunkers are not very useful as they are fixed to a spot and terrorists can easily avoid them while planning an attack.” Each mobile bunker is bullet-proof and costs ₹75,000. Mr. Balode said, “The plan has been approved and money has been sanctioned. The order will be delivered by March-end.” The personnel manning the bunkers will be provided with bullet-proof jackets.

The Western Railway (WR) is also planning to deploy seven mobile bunkers at important railway stations, including Churchgate, Mumbai Central, Borivali and Bandra. An RPF official said, “However, the tenders have not yet been invited and the file is still being processed at the headquarters.” The proposal is to purchase 24 mobile bunkers costing a total of ₹1.8 crore. Anup Kumar Shukla, Senior Divisional Security Commissioner, WR, RPF, said, “This is one of the steps we are taking to safeguard passengers. The mobile bunkers will help us to take down the targets.”

While passenger associations are happy with the move, they say authorities should come up with a permanent solution. Subhash Gupta, a railway activist, said, “This is a good initiative, but the Railways should think of ways completely plug illegal entry points.”