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A crime every 30 minutes on trains

A significant number of these crimes take place in UP, Bihar and J'khand.

india Updated: May 31, 2006 10:59 IST

The next time you want to board a train in India, at least in the northern parts of the country, you may like to exercise some extra caution -- a crime takes place inside trains or at railway premises every 30 minutes, shows official data.

Worse, the first three months of 2006 witnessed an over 200 percent increase in the number of rape cases inside the trains and railway premises.

A significant number of these crimes are taking place in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand, said a senior railway official.

"Between January and March, 20 rapes and 38 cases of dacoity were reported to the railway police. During the same period last year, six rapes and 21 cases of dacoity were registered," said the official.

"In all, railway police registered about 2,700 crime cases in the first three months of 2006," the official added.

India, with one of the world's largest railway networks, has about 9,000 passenger trains running on the tracks every single day carrying more than 14 million passengers.

"Preventing crime and maintaining law and order at railway premises and trains are the tasks of the Government Railway Police (GRP) under state governments," said AK Singh, deputy inspector general for crime at Indian Railways.

"But we are supplementing the efforts of railway police by deploying the Railway Protection Force (RPF) -- which comes under the ministry of railways -- at vulnerable sections of the network," Singh said.

Singh said the RPF needed more personnel to strengthen the efforts aimed at providing better security in trains and railway premises.

"A proposal to increase the strength of the force is in the pipeline."

Data with IANS also showed that around 11,000 cases of crime -- murder, dacoity, rape and theft of luggage -- were committed in trains or at railway premises and registered in 2005.

The statistics on rape were equally shocking. During the past two years, 62 women were raped in various premises of Indian Railways and 17 became victims inside trains.

Every day, there were also two murders or attempts to murder cases in trains or railway premises on an average during the past two years. This year, 58 such cases have been registered between January and March.

There is also rampant theft of luggage. During the past year alone, passengers reported about 10,800 cases of luggage theft -- the figure being 12,000 in 2004.

This year, passengers lost one luggage in trains or railway premises almost every 25 minutes.

First Published: May 31, 2006 10:59 IST