A surprise check by the railway vigilance squad evoked a violent reaction from a Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE) who reportedly bashed up the squad members after he was detained for questioning at the Chennai Central Railway Station on Friday.
At least one squad officer sustained bleeding injuries while others were at the receiving end of blows from the TTE, who was a professional boxer as well, Government Railway Police (GRP) sources said.
The accused, P Karunakaran, a Deputy TTE at Central, was taken for questioning by the team of four officers comprising Gauthaman, Sridharan, Giridhar and Harichandran, attached to the Vigilance Organisation of the Southern Railway.
“During the course of questioning at an office on Platform One, Karunakaran assaulted the squad members. One officer suffered cut injuries on his face. The accused absconded immediately and a search is on to nab him,” Government Railway Police Inspector Sekar said. The accused was already facing a few cases in other police stations, Sekar added.
The GRP booked him under Sections 294(b) (uttering obscene words in public place), 323 (voluntarily causing injuries) and 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Another source with the railway security claimed that Karunakaran could have been investigated by the squad as he was allegedly possessing excess money. “Every ticket examiner must make an entry into a register about the amount of money that he was possessing before commencing the day’s work. But if any Travelling Ticket Examiner was caught with unaccounted cash during such surprise checks, they would be taken for questioning,” the source reasoned.
Meanwhile, a senior official with the Southern Railway stated that the attack on the vigilance personnel was the second such incident this year. “We would not be deterred by such assaults and cont inue to act against the violators,” the official asserted.