Despite regular crackdowns by the railway police, youngsters continue to flirt with death, performing reckless aerobatics in running locals.
On August 9, Sayeed Mohsin Raza (14) slipped while swinging off the pole at the compartment’s entrance in a train between Thane and Mumbra. His family members, in mourning, were at first not ready to believe that Mohsin lost his life indulging in an irresponsible lark because he was “such a good, homely boy”.
On August 9, the day his family was absorbed in Eid festivities, Mohsin went out to a mall in Thane with his friends. While returning, he boarded a train, which was nearly empty, tempting him to try out some daredevilry on the pole, which ended up killing him.
His crestfallen 57-year-old father, Sayeed Husain Raza, requested other parents to keep an eye on what their kids are up to. “It was a shock that my son was performing such dangerous stunts. It’s my humble request to all the parents to watch the activities of their kids and save their life.
They don’t understand the importance of life at a young age and we need to teach them,” said Husain, who had four children, Mohsin being the youngest.
Recalling the day, Husain said, “A day before, he had shopped for Eid and was excited to celebrate with his friends. After namaz early morning, he said he was going out with friends. I didn’t know he would die this way. He was not very good at studies but was the apple of my eye. He used to help me with my work and understood my troubles. I didn’t think he knew these stunts.”
Mohsin’s mother died 14 years ago, months after giving him birth. “She had a brain tumour due to which Mohsin had to be prematurely delivered at only six months. He was put in a glass box with all the tubes and paraphernalia attached to him to keep him alive. He could have died right then,” Husain said, unable to hold back his tears. He had just seen the video of his son’s deadly stunt. Mohsin’s siblings still believe the rush in locals was responsible for his death, but the train barely had a handful of commuters on the day.
A friend of Mohsin’s, Sufiyaan Zeeva, 14, has had fever since the day he saw Mohsin’s body in hospital. “We went to the mall in the morning and while returning, all of us got into a coach but Mohsin was in another coach. We didn’t see him doing stunts,” said Zeeva. According to him, when they reached Mumbra, they found Mohsin’s shoe stuck at the door.
“Passengers told us that a boy in red pants and blue shirt fell out of the train near Reti Bunder. We immediately came home and informed other friends who went to the spot, but by then his body was taken to Shivaji Hospital in Kalwa,” said Zeeva. His family says he has not eaten since the day he saw the body. “He is scared to death,” a relative said.
The number of persons fined for stunts, travelling on rooftop or footboard etc between January and July
Persons fined in the three days after Mohsin’s death
Number of persons fined for these offences last Sunday
The RPF and the GRP say they have been conducting drives to catch those performing fatal stunts in trains. If they catch boys below 12 years, parents are called in and a counselling session follows. If the offender is between 12 and 18, he is fined Rs 500 and adults are fined and produced in court.
Officials said kids barely 10 years of age are also eager to show off their capers in a moving train. “Most of the boys we catch say they are influenced by films and want to perform for real like how Salman Khan does,” said an RPF official.
Alok Bohra, senior divisional security commissioner, Central Railway, said, “Performing stunts is very dangerous and we are counselling the kids and the parents. I request the parents to teach their kids about the dangers of such stunts.”