Rail ki patri paar na kare (Don’t cross railway tracks) — the famous jingle played at railway stations across Mumbai — marked the beginning of the Western Railway’s (WR) anti-trespassing drive at Goregaon. The WR on Thursday started a one-month drive, aiming to reduce the trespassing cases from 70 (reported in the last 10 months at Goregaon) to zero. Every day, 10 people on an average die on tracks.
The drive began amidst trespassers who continued their habit of crossing the tracks. The Non-Government Organisation, We the People, is conducting this drive. Some trespassers ran helter-skelter on tracks seeing the group of volunteers.
“We had conducted a study where commuters who cross tracks said that they fail to hear the horn and can’t even see the approaching train out of fear,” said WR divisional railway manager, C. P. Sharma.
The 66 volunteers will be divided in four shifts, each supported by 14 railway police officials, who will persuade people to use two foot over-bridges. “The volunteers can hand over a commuter to the officials or the ticket-master if one misbehaves, and they can then be dealt with according to the law,” added Sharma.
From January to November, nearly 18,000 people were caught trespassing out of which 411 were arrested and either sent behind bars or let off after paying the fine.