WR’s RPF steps up drive to prevent train robberies

Mumbai: The Railway Protection Force (RPF) of the Western Railways has initiated an awareness campaign to ensure passengers do not eat food offered by co-passengers, as it could be drugged in order to facilitate theft. The campaign headed by senior divisional security commissioner Anand Vijay Jha said this was being done as a precaution after a case was detected in Surat last year. “The campaign is on in all major stations such as Mumbai Central, Bandra, Andheri and Borivali. We are distributing pamphlets as well telling the passengers verbally that they should avoid eating anything offered to them by passengers who might strike up a conversation and appear to be harmless,” said Mr Jha. Efforts have been doubled in the past one-month due to festival season as many Mumbaikars travel to their hometown during this time. “During festival season, people tend to be more trust ful and don’t realise that miscreants take advantage and drug food and offer them to individuals who might be traveling alone or even in groups,” he added. The RPF of the WR team had also come under the radar in August of last year when women passengers were being robbed of their purses in Rajdhani, while they were asleep, including the wife of Central Railways (CR) general manager Sunil Kumar Sood. Preeti Sood was robbed of Rs.10,000 in cash and gold worth Rs.50,000. Passengers can also call Indian Railways security helpline 182 if they are victims of a crime while commuting on long distance trains.