In a move that will facilitate women travelling in the first class ladies compartments of suburban local trains, the Central Railway (CR) has started deploying lady constables at five stations during rush hours, to direct them to queue up while boarding.
The initiative, which aims to bring about a discipline among railway passengers and curb the mad rush seen for catching a seat in a local train, has been launched at five select stations, namely, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), Thane, Dombivali, Kalyan and Badlapur and will be implemented during peak hours.
Women constables from Railway Protection Force (RPF) have been roped in for the purpose. "We have started deploying lady RPF constables to have a safe and orderly boarding in the first class ladies coaches at five stations-- CST, Thane, Dombivali, Kalyan and Badlapur during the peak hours. Our constables stand near the coaches and ask women passengers to queue up and then get into the coach," Sachin Bhalode, senior divisional security commissioner of the Mumbai division of the CR, said.
A number of people lose their lives while boarding the trains during peak hour in order to get a seat and the railway administration feels this initiative will curb such accidents.
"Through this initiative, we are also confident of curbing crimes such as pick-pocketing, chain-snatching and other incidents which take place in mad rush," Bhalode said. The initiative has been welcomed by passengers and their representatives. Kailash Verma, General Secretary of Mumbai Rail Pravasi Sangh, hailed the decision and said it must not be discontinued.
"This initiative was started at Bhayander station on the Western Railway line by few vigilant people and it's good to know that railway administration has taken it further. But, it can only have an impact if this queue system is maintained and monitored by the RPF in the future as well."