LUCKNOW: In a major embarrassment to Indian Railways, the coach attendant and GRP jawan deployed in Delhi-bound Kanpur-New Delhi Reverse Shatabdi Express denied a dhoti-clad octogenarian entry into the coach despite he had a seat reserved.
However, taking cognizance of the issue, higher authorities of Railway, on Saturday, ordered a probe into the incident which happened in Etawah on Thursday.
Identified as seer Ram Awadh Das of Musepur Thuratia village in Barabanki, had a confirmed ticket in Kanpur-Delhi Reverse Shatabdi. When the 82-year-old dhoti-clad seer tried to board the train at Etawah station on Thursday at 7:40 am, the coach attendant and guard stopped him. As the express train stops just for two minutes in Etawah, it left at 7:42 am.
Having denied entry, the seer went to the station master and lodged a complaint accusing the Government Railways Police (GRP) cop of not letting him board the superfast train as he was dressed ‘differently’. He then took a bus to Ghaziabad.
Later talking to media persons, Das said he was shocked as if it was India of British era. As per sources, he was going to his followers in Ghaziabad.
Now the railway authorities have set up a probe into the incident, However, they were claiming that the old man had boarded a wrong coach and was sent to his coach but he failed to reach in time and train left.
As per the North Central railway authorities, it was not discrimination. It would be wrong to call it discrimination over clothes.
Ram Awadh Das had a reservation in coach C-2 and his seat number was 71. He was trying to board the generator coach. The RPF jawan deputed in generator coach asked him to go to his coach but he could not reach owing to his old age. He missed the train as Etawah is just two-minute stop, said the authorities.
The sources in NCR PR office claimed that Etawah Station Master tried to help him take Magadh Express till Delhi but he refused as Magadh did not stop at Ghaziabad.
The railway authorities also claimed that the coach conductor, coach attendant and GRP jawan would be questioned in the matter by senior railway officials.