CHENNAI: The Railway Police have come forward with a proposal to give a security blanket to the Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) stations under the Southern Railway(SR).
The proposal comes in the wake of the SR considering the option of engaging private security personnel at the MRTS stations from Mandeveli to Velacherry.
“So far we don’t have a presence at the MRTS stations as there is no mandate. The proposal will be put forward with the SR to sanction our presence at MRTS,” said DIG (Railways) Sandeep Rai Rathore.
He also said that there were only a few railway police personnel involved in providing security for EMUs. “The present strength of the personnel sanctioned is only for the existing train services (main services),” he added. At present, security for MRTS is provided by the Railway Protection Force. Senior SR officials pointed out that with limited number of personnel, it was difficult for RPF to provide security cover for the stations and also restrict the entry of unauthorised people inside the MRTS premises.
“Several of these stations are located close to the slums. It is learnt that people from the slums frequent the stations and misuse them.
The SR is already holding discussions with different departments and agencies to bring MRTS under a security cover. It will happen very soon,” said VJ Accamma, the spokesperson for SR.
After the Vysarpadi Jeeva accident, the SR had reinforced the security at railway stations.
It had allotted more than Rs 50 crore for improving the security at all major stations falling under it. It was also decided to install security cameras at suburban stations.
“It is yet to be learnt whether MRTS will be brought under this kind of security system.
The massive structures at the stations were built taking into account future development plans. Except for the peak hour rush, these huge structures with no adequate security in place often turn out to be the favourite haunt of anti-social elements,” said a senior railway official.