RPF constable saves couple, children on rail tracks in Delhi, gets killed by approaching train
A 50-year-old constable of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) was killed by a Shatabdi Express on Sunday evening while saving a couple and some children from going under the train at the railway tracks near Azadpur railway station.
According to the police, the incident took place around 9.30pm when constable Jagbir Singh Rana was patrolling the tracks between Adarsh Nagar and Aazadpur railway stations.
“His name will be sent to the President for the bravery award (posthumously),” Arun Kumar, director general, RPF, said.
“As told by witnesses and residents, when he reached signal number seven, he saw a couple arguing on the tracks. Rana spotted a Hoshiarpur Express train approaching the couple. Those who witnessed the incident said Rana ran towards the couple and alerted them. He pushed the man and the woman out of the train’s way and also stepped away from the track. Within a fraction of a second, the train passed by,” an RPF officer, who is not authorised to speak to the media, said.
Meanwhile, three children from the neighbourhood, who had come to dump garbage near the tracks, were standing on another parallel track and were watching the couple fight. “Suddenly, Rana heard a train blow its horn and realised that another train was approaching him and the kids. He shouted at the kids to move away. They managed to step off the tracks but Rana, even as he jumped away, was hit by the train,” the officer said.
Kishan Shah, who lives in one of the hutments near Azadpur railway station, witnessed the incident. “The policeman was thrown up in the air. He fell at least 15 metres away,” Shah said.
Mohammad Naeem, another resident, said, “Many come here to dump garbage. We do not remember seeing them (the couple) here. I saw that the policeman first saved the couple and then ran after the children.”
Deputy commissioner of police (railways) Dinesh Kumar Gupta said they got a call about the accident around 9.45pm. “The initial inquiry revealed that he was run over while trying to save a woman and some children . The train that hit him was the Kalka Shatabdi. His body was preserved for a post-mortem examination and family members were informed,” Gupta said.
On Monday, Rana’s family donated his eyes before taking his body to his village Jatola in Sonepat, for his last rites. Rana had joined RPF in July 1989.
“A wreath-laying ceremony was arranged for Rana, who had won the meritorious services award twice in his 29-year career. One of the awards was given by the minister of state of railways in 2009 and the other by the divisional railway in 2008,” RN Singh, divisional railway manager (Delhi division), said.
Rana, who was posted at RPF’s Adarsh Nagar police station, is survived by his wife and two sons.
Rana’s elder son Rohit Kumar said his family was in shock but were proud that Rana died in the line of duty. “He was sincere about his duty. He successfully saved a woman and three children. His sacrifice will always motivate us,” Kumar, a final year BA student, said.
Rana’s elder brother Rajbir Singh said Rana was the only earning member of his family. “Both his sons are studying. We hope the state administration or the force will help them,” Rajbir said.