If you thought throwing water balloons is not a serious crime, think again. The Government Railway Police (GRP) has intensified its efforts of ensuring passenger safety this Holi, by identifying about 20 locations across the suburban lines as danger spots, and holding awareness meetings with residents of slums near railway tracks for over a month.
The GRP also plans to book offenders under section 151, 151 (3) and 152 of the Indian Railway Act, 1989, which could even imply life imprisonment for those found guilty. “Most of the offenders are residents of slums near the railway tracks. However, due to stringent measures by the authorities, we’ve been able to bring down the number of cases reported,” said G S Bhandare, DCP, Central Railway.
The indoor office staff of the railways will also be seen patrolling railway tracks, especially platforms and female compartments in the train to ensure complete safety to the passengers. “Throwing balloons at people is a serious offence and people end up getting hurt for the sake of someone else’s entertainment,” said a senior railway official from GRP, WR.
Railway officials also claim that most of these hooligans, often teenagers looking to have some fun, tend to escape serious punishment. It is difficult to identify the accused after the incidence has occurred. Thus, senior officials added that they would keep a close check on people and try to catch them red handed if seen flouting the law.
Under Section 151 of the Indian Railway Act, 1989 the offenders will be booked for 24 hours and under section 151(3), offenders are sent to 14 days of judicial custody. Bansidhar Shirsat, DCP, Western Railway said, “We will book the offenders under different sections depending on the kind of injuries reported.” The railway police have also requested the general public to be careful by making sure they aren’t standing too close to the door or sitting too close to the windows.
What is Section 152?
'If any person unlawfully throws or causes to fall or strike at, against, into or upon any rolling stock forming part of a train, any wood, stone or other matter or thing with intent, or with knowledge that he is likely to endanger the safety of any person being in or upon such rolling stock or in or upon any other rolling stock forming part of the same train, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years.'
Central and Harbour Lines
Masjid and Byculla
Matunga and Sion
Ghatkopar and Vikhroli
Thane and Kalwa
Shahad and Ambivali
Between Borivli and Dahisar