Surprise check on Samjhauta Express near zero line at Attari

  • Aseem Bassi, Hindustan Times, Amritsar
  • Updated: Jan 01, 2015 23:33 IST

As tension continues to mount along the Indo-Pakistan border in Jammu region, the passengers of the Samjhauta Express were in for a big surprise on Thursday as security personnel stopped the cross-border train as soon as it crossed the zero line on the Attari border and entered India.

The train, which has the scheduled time of arrival at the Attari railway station at 12.30pm reached there at around 2.30pm on Thursday.

As soon as the border gates were opened on the zero line to allow Samjhauta Express into India, a large number of security personnel from the Punjab Police, Government Railway Police (GRP) and the Border Security Force (BSF) were present there, besides customs officials, to conduct a surprise check on the train.

The security personnel were fully geared with anti-sabotage gadgets and the required stuff for the high-level checking.

Notably, the security has been heightened for the Samjhauta Express and the Indo-Pak buses which are understood to be "on target" (of disruptive forces). A threat letter had also been received in the recent past regarding Samjhauta Express.

Speaking about the Thursday's security check, Amritsar senior superintendent of police (rural) Jasdeep Singh, said, "It was a surprise check. Threats do come in regularly regarding this highly sensitive train. On Thursday, as soon as the train crossed into Indian territory, it was stopped and an intensive checking was done".

The SSP said, "The teams of the BSF and customs were inside the train and the police searched the outer area. We had deployed one DSP, 3 SHOs and a large number of constables for the checking. The main aim was to check if there were any anti-national elements or any threatening substances in the train. But no recovery was made".

He added, "The security for the Indo-Pak buses has already been heightened and a complete surveillance is kept along the routes through which these bus travel".

The Samjhauta Express, which travels between the two nations on every Monday and Thursday, had of late been under security threat. The threat letter received recently with regard to the train had put the security agencies on high alert.

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