A vice-principal of a high school was one of the 71 people rounded up for crossing tracks at Kurla on Monday.
The Railway Protection Force was conducting a special drive to create awareness about the perils of crossing railway tracks.
Rehana Mumtaz, vice-principal of AK Girls High School in Kurla (West), was rushing to her school when RPF officials apprehended her.
She was caught while walking on the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) bound slow track. But after giving the police her name, she rushed off claiming to be late for work.
The Central Railway RPF conducted a special drive from 11 am to 12.15 pm at the CST-end of platforms 4, 5 and 6 of Kurla station in order to bring awareness about the dangers of crossing tracks, especially among children.
“We had information that schoolchildren cross tracks at this spot while going to school in the morning. Knowing that children are the future of our country and a small mistake can cost them their life, we decided on conducting a special drive for them,” said Sanjay Singh, senior inspector of Kurla RPF.
A total of 71 people — 36 men, 21 women and 20 schoolchildren — were rounded up during the drive.
These included several working professionals and women who were crossing the tracks with their children.
Children studying from Class 4 to Class 12 were caught during the awareness drive. Several of them vowed never to cross tracks again.
Prakash More (17), a Class 12 student of Siddharth College, CST said: “From today onwards, I will never cross railway tracks even in case of emergency. Even though my friend told me to use to bridge, just to save on few minutes, I jumped on the tracks.”
He lives near Kurla garden.
Kazi Shahanwaz (24), a Kurla resident, employed at a private company in Kalina, said: “This was the first and the last time that I cross the tracks. It was month-end and the reporting time at my office is 11 am. I was already very late and had to rush to catch a bus for my office.”
Shahanwaz added: “My uncle is a police officer, I know that crossing tracks is illegal.”
After being rounded up, the trespassers — especially children — were told to call up their family members and were also counselled.
“Our officials spoke to the family members, parents of the children and counselled them as well,” Singh said.
“We told them about the dangers of trespassing and about the importance their life holds for their family members, besides informing them about the use of foot over-bridges and subways,” Singh added.
The trespassers were then let off as they were getting late for their office and schools.