Next time you are at a metro station, make sure not to get visibly angry while speaking on the mobile phone. Do not miss trains intentionally. And if you plan to catch a breath in a quiet corner, get done quickly. And if you miss these simple tricks, you will most likely end up facing uncomfortable questions from the metro security staff.
And this is not a new anti-terror security drill. But an attempt by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) to spot people who betray signs of suicidal tendencies and stop them from taking the fatal jump in front of an oncoming metro train, a top security official said.
This year, 12 people committed suicide at one of Delhi’s 156 metro stations, CISF data showed. While 21 people were saved by security personnel and other passengers, more than 20 had to be hospitalised after suffering varying degrees of injuries in their suicide attempts.
“In most of the cases, people committing suicide spend few hours on the station before jumping on the rail track,” CISF spokesperson Manjeet Singh told HT.
“In every station, two-three CISF personnel are stationed to keep an eye on CCTV footage at the platforms…They have to spot people with unusual behaviour.”
And this is no easy task. An estimated 30 lakh people take the metro in the city daily. Around 5000 CISF personnel, besides metro security staff, are on duty at the stations.
Over the years hundreds of people have killed themselves at the metro stations. Last year, 18 out of 89 people who had attempted suicide were killed on metro tracks.
Besides loss of lives, such incidents also lead to long delays as trains are stopped till the tracks are cleared, metro officials said.
A week ago, an elderly man who jumped in front of a metro train and was killed at the Civil Lines Metro station, was noticed by a CISF personnel in an agitated state in another station, security officials said.
He was held by the CISF and handed over to staff of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). After being let off half-an-hour later, the man took a train to the next station and jumped in front of a train.
In a recent case, another elderly man was saved by an alert CISF jawan at the Uttam Nagar metro Station.
CISF officials said people with signs of suicidal tendencies such as depression will be handed over to their families or, if a suicide note is recovered from them, to the Delhi Metro Rail Police. Attempt to suicide is a criminal offence under Indian laws.
CISF officials said the maximum numbers of suicide attempts were made on the Blue Line (Dwarka Sector 21 to Noida City Centre) where 17 people ended their lives.
The DMRC recently reduced the time a person can spend in the paid area of metro, in an attempt to deter people from loitering in the already crowded metro stations.