Mumbai: Flak forces GRP to scrap controversial letter

Aug 20, 2017, 08:42 IST | Rajendra B. Aklekar

A day after mid-day's report about an accident victim lying unattended in Thane because of a fight between GRP and RPF over a recent letter issued by the former, the GRP, withdrew the controversial letter

On Saturday, mid-day reported about the GRP-RPF dispute which left a man waiting for assistance
On Saturday, mid-day reported about the GRP-RPF dispute which left a man waiting for assistance

A day after mid-day's report about an accident victim lying unattended in Thane because of a fight between the government railway police (GRP) and Railway Protection Force (RPF) over a recent letter issued by the former ('GRP-RPF fight leaves man bleeding on tracks'), the GRP, on Saturday, withdrew the controversial letter. The GRP took aggressively to twitter to announce this and said it was re-drafting processes, on the handling of accident victims, with the help of the railway administration so that such incidents did not recur.

Denying any delay on its part, the GRP stated that attending to the injured has always been their priority and that orders in this regard were absolutely clear. "Any agency that finds an injured person must immediately transfer him to the nearest hospital. Reporting to the GRP and the subsequent enquiry/paper work should follow in due course.

While the Railways' Additional Director General Jai Jeet Singh did not respond to calls, the GRP clarified on Twitter, saying, "The injured man at Thane was taken to the stationmaster's room, who, instead of calling an ambulance wasted precious time making announcements to call GRP. Why is the GRP needed to send an injured person to hospital?"

Though it was eventually the GRP who shifted Sunil Pal, 21, to hospital, they said they had tried to get in touch with the RPF, but got no assistance.
Railway activist Bhawesh Patel, who has been following up the issue of who takes a rail accident victim to hospital, said he would be taking up the matter with the GRP.

Mumbai has a very high track death rate with an average of 10 people dying every day in rail accidents. In 2016, 3,202 commuters died and 3,363 were injured.

The Emergency Medical Rooms at stations and emergency ambulances have proved to be hugely beneficial to accident victims as a first-response in the golden-hour period.

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