Starting off a campaign against stone pelting at trains, a special coach train comprising railway officials and local MLAs travelled from the city station to Kengeri on Saturday morning.
Fourteen cases of stone pelting have been reported this year, resulting in damage to property and injuries to passengers and loco pilots. The campaign was led by Deputy Railway Manager A K Agarwal accompanied by Vjayanagar MLA M Krishnappa and other officials. The campaigners stopped at Byatarayanapura to interact with locals and distributed pamphlets. “These incidents are restricted to Bangalore area and more than 200 people have been arrested for stone pelting,” stated Agarwal.
The incidents were reported mainly from slum areas such as Goripalya, Byatarayanapura, Nayandahalli and Deepanjalinagar. The Mysore-Bangalore passenger and Yeswantpur-Kannur Express have been regular targets and at least 200 window panes of A/C coaches of the Shatabdi Express have been broken. A K Agarwal said, “Trains are public property, damaging it is a punishable offence carrying imprisonment of up to three years. It is the responsibility of the parents to tell their children not to indulge in such practices.”
Agarwal also said that as a counter measure there is a plan to build protection walls for up to 3 km along the reported areas.
“Public awareness campaigns have been done in the past in Byappanahalli with the help of local MLAs,” he said.