Delhi Metro: Staff shortage puts safety of commuters at risk
Tussle over jurisdiction has hit security at Metro stations. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) is responsible for the security inside Metro stations and often the area outside goes unmanned.delhi Updated: Oct 11, 2015 10:44 IST
Tussle over jurisdiction has hit security at Metro stations. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) is responsible for the security inside Metro stations and often the area outside goes unmanned.
The Metro pans across Delhi, Haryana and UP and local police in all three states have a problem of insufficient staff because of which many areas have become a hub for crimes such as snatching and murder.
Since most of the stations fall in Delhi, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) has asked the CISF to cover the area outside stations too. The CISF currently has a staff strength of 5,000 personnel for the 151 Metro stations across the Capital and has demanded nearly 3,500 additional personnel to cover the areas outside the stations.
According to sources, the MHA has asked the CISF to provide security at parking lots of Metro stations as these could be possible terror targets. In 2013, when a 29-year-old woman was shot while she was on an escalator near the entrance of a Metro station near the Karkardooma court, concerns were raised over the dark spots and the CISF was asked to cover areas beyond its jurisdiction.
“Currently, we don’t have staff to guard the parkings but our Quick Reaction Teams conduct random checks. Once we get the staff, better security structure can be planned,” the official added.
At elevated stations with large areas, the CISF generally puts a security point at the first or the second floor but the ground floor is unmanned. There have been meetings with agencies to deploy security personnel in the area but the shortage of staff has stopped Delhi Police from doing so.
“We only have 200 personnel under the railway unit of Delhi Police while our demand is of 2,000 personnel,” a police official said. As CISF starts frisking only from the main station area, Delhi Police was asked to take responsibility of all entry points and parking lots at the stations.
“Before the security point of CISF, there is still huge area that needs to be covered. It is important to increase police presence in these uncovered areas to deter criminals,” the official added.