Government Railway Police (GRP) officers at Sion station were in for a rude shock on Monday when a woman they had just rescued from jumping off a local train set herself ablaze on the platform. In the process of dousing the flames, a constable sustained burns to his hands as well.
The woman, identified as Sameera Shaikh (22), is a housewife based in Ghatkopar. On November 26, Sameera left her home alone and boarded a CST bound local from Ghatkopar. A relative, Shabista Ansari, who was on her way from Mumbra to Kurla spotted Sameera boarding the train at Ghatkopar and decided to follow her.
As the train approached Sion station, Sameera made a dash for the footboard and tried to jump off the train. Shabista raised an alarm, and with the help of other female passengers, was able to restrain Sameera.
Seeing the commotion in the compartment, the GRP officials on the platform approached the group and took Sameera into custody.
“The passengers informed the constable that a woman was trying to jump off the train and a group of females had managed to catch her,” said Prakash Kirdat, senior police inspector of Dadar GRP.
However, Sameera pulled out a matchbox and set herself on fire on the platform. GRP officials doused the flames and rushed her to Sion hospital. “The constable who tried to save her also suffered burn injuries,” said Kirdat.
According to Sameera’s husband Arif, Sameera is mentally unstable and has been under treatment for a few years.
“My wife is mentally unstable and was undergoing treatment at Rajawadi hospital, but we stopped the medication almost a year back. I was not aware of her problem until our marriage. We have a 15-month-old child.”
“She has already tried to commit suicide twice before, once by taking sleeping pills and on an another occasion by drinking Phenyl,” added Arif, who is an insurance agent.
A senior doctor from Sion hospital said, “Sameera was brought in on Monday afternoon and was initially admitted to the burns ward where the doctors provided her with medical aid. She suffered about 65 per cent burns ranging from superficial to deep burns.”
MiD DAY managed to speak to Sameera on her husband’s mobile phone. Sameera, while whispering on the phone, said, “I tried to jump from the train and kill myself. But when I was stopped, I set myself on fire.”
“My ill parents are already admitted in hospital and now my wife has also been admitted,” said Arif.
The police have registered a case of attempted suicide.