Air India pilot's bag stolen in Mumbai-bound Rajdhani Express

Aug 08, 2014, 11:41 IST | Neha LM Tripathi

The bag contained her airport access card and Rs 40,000 cash. On-duty ticket examiner admitted to have been inebriated when the theft took place

Air India’s senior captain Satya Rajmohan had a bitter experience while travelling in the Rajdhani Express yesterday, when she realised that her bag containing her access card and cash was missing.

Captain Satya Rajmohan (in blue) along with co-passenger Neeta Bokaria (in red) at the GRP office at Mumbai Central station
Captain Satya Rajmohan (in blue) along with co-passenger Neeta Bokaria (in red) at the GRP office at Mumbai Central station

Rajmohan, who resides in Govandi, boarded the 12952 Mumbai Rajdhani Express and was on her way to the city after visiting her mother in Delhi. She was was travelling in the second AC coach A-3 on berth 7. When she woke up at 4:30 am, she was startled to find her bag missing.

She screamed for help, but there were no RPF officers in the coach. On hearing her cry for help, three other passengers found that they, too, had lost their luggage. Rajmohan said, “We approached the ticket examiner, who then carried out some paper work as a standard procedure.

We later realised that he was under the influence of alcohol. We complained to the station master at Mumbai Central, but he did not take our complaint seriously. We then went to the GRP office at the station.” “I am stressed as I have lost my airport access card, which is of utmost importance to me. Approximately R40,000 in cash is also gone,” she added.

Drunk TTE?
Neeta Bokaria, another passenger travelling on berth 49 of the same coach, whose baggage had also been stolen, accompanied Rajmohan to the GRP office. Surya Kumar Parihar, the ticket examiner on duty, admitted to the GRP that he had consumed alcohol around 10.30 pm (video with mid-day). The theft reportedly took place between Vadodara station and Ratlam junction in MP.

Rajendra Trivedi, Senior Police Inspector, Mumbai Central GRP, said, “The luggage of four passengers had been stolen but only two of them reported the theft. We have registered an FIR and have transferred the case to the Vadodara GRP.” An official from Western Railway said, “The breath analyser test conducted by us did not show that the ticket examiner was drunk. However, medical tests will be conducted and an inquiry has already been instituted.”

Major dilemma
The captain, who has been a pilot for 20 years and was scheduled to fly to London from Mumbai today, will now have to get a new access card made in order to be able to fly again. In order to get a new card, Rajmohan will have to go through a list of formalities.

Speaking to mid-day, a senior official from the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), which issues the access cards said, “If a crew member loses his/her card, an FIR has to be registered. After this, an application has to be submitted to us through the concerned airline and Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL).

The pass number is then given to the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and only then does the pass-making process begin.” “There is no way a pilot can fly a plane if he/she does not have the access card. It takes at least 20 working days to issue the pass,” the BCAS official added.

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