The state home department, on Friday, assured the Bombay high court that there would soon be one police personnel in every ladies compartment of suburban trains on central and harbour lines for the safety for women commuters.
The court was hearing a suo-moto public interest litigation based on two reports by the Hindustan Times, which highlighted plight of women commuting on suburban trains.
Deputy secretary RC Chavan has filed an affidavit stating: “the Commissioner of Police, Railways has suggested adding 100 police personnel for escorting duties for ensuring that one police constable is deployed in every ladies compartment of suburban trains running on central and harbour line”.
As on Friday, 232 police personnel are deployed on escort duty on suburban trains betw-een 8.30pm and 6.30am. But the strength of the force is not eno-ugh to ensure one police constable for every ladies compartment.
According to the affidavit, the proposal forwarded by CP, Railways for sanctioning additional 2,648 posts in Government Railway Police (GRP) has been received by the additional chief secretary (ACS), Home and it is under consideration by the state government. As an immediate measure, the home department has decided to divert 100 additional police personnel to the GRP, the affidavit adds.
Additional government pleader Rajesh Behere informed the court that apart from these measures, the GRP has decided to increase the strength of Home Guards, and utilise their services during the day. Behere said a meeting of concerned officials from GRP and RPF was convened in presence of Umeshch-andra Sarangi, ACS, Home on August 5, in which various long-term measures were discussed.
Anil Sharma, Chief Security Commissioner, Railway Protection Force (RPF) (Central Railway) has also filed an affidavit stating a proposal for creation of 2,638 additional posts in RPF has been forwarded to the Railway Board in September 2010.
Of these, 1632 personnel are meant for the Central line and the remaining for the Western line. But, the Railway Board has sanctioned merely 225 new posts. Taking note of this, the division bench of chief justice Mohit Shah and justice Ranjana Desai added the board in the list of respondents, and issued them a notice.