Rajeev Chandrasekhar's official website - Member of Parliament

Government of India

Ministry of Railways

Rajya Sabha

Question No. 2184

To be answered on 06th December 2019

Explosion at Hubballi Railway Station

 

  1. SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR:

Will the Minister of RAILWAYS be pleased to state:

(a)Whether the Ministry admits that lapse by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) staff was prima facie evident in the low-intensity explosion at Hubballi railway station that occurred on 21st October, 2019 where one civilian was injured;

(b)If so, the details thereof; and

(c)The additional steps taken by Government to increase safety of passengers at railway stations in the country, considering the increasing threat of anti-national elements?

 

ANSWER

Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry

(Shri Piyush Goyal)

 

(a)to (c)A Statement is laid on the Table of the House.

STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PARTS (a) TO (c) OF UNSTARRED QUESTION NO. 2184 BY SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR ANSWERED IN RAJYA SABHA ON 06.12.2019 REGARDING EXPLOSION AT HUBBALLI RAILWAY STATION

(a)And (b) A low intensity explosion occurred at Hubballi Railway Station on 21.10.2019. On receiving information regarding a left-over luggage in Train no. 17225 at Hubballi Railway Station (Platform no. 4), Railway Protection Force (RPF) took unclaimed baggage to Station Manager’s Office and some paddy dust in red cloth along with 08 nos. of small plastic boxes with dry lemon like articles were found inside it. A food supplier took one lemon like article and tried to break it and a low intensity explosion took place injuring his palm. Immediately he was rushed to the hospital by RPF. Since the unclaimed luggage was handled without observing due precaution and an outsider was permitted to tamper with contents of the unclaimed luggage, the Station Master as well as the RPF personnel on duty have been taken up for lapses on their part.

(c)Policing on Railways being a State subject, prevention of crime, registration of cases, their investigation and maintenance of law and order in Railway premises as well as on running trains are the statutory responsibility of the State Governments, which they discharge through Government Railway Police (GRP)/District Police. Cases of Indian Penal Code (IPC) crimes are registered and investigated by the concerned GRP. Railway Protection Force (RPF) supplements the efforts of GRP to provide better protection and security to passenger area and passengers and for matters connected therewith.

However, the following steps are also being taken by the Railways in coordination with GRP for safety and security of passengers in trains and at stations: -

  1. On vulnerable and identified routes/sections, 2200 trains (on an average) are escorted by Railway Protection Force daily in addition to 2200 trains escorted by Government Railway Police of different States daily.
    Surveillance is kept through Close Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras, provided at about 501 stations over Indian Railways, to ensure safety and security of passengers.
    3. Security Help Line number 182 is operational over Indian Railways for security related assistance to passengers in distress.
    4. Through various social media platforms viz. twitter, facebook etc., Railways are in regular touch with passengers to enhance security and address their security concerns.
    5. An Integrated Security System (ISS) consisting of surveillance of vulnerable stations through CCTV Camera Network, Access Control etc. has been sanctioned to improve surveillance mechanism over 202 railway stations.
    6. Anti-sabotage checks are undertaken with sniffer dogs at all major stations as well as in trains. Further baggage scanners are being used at entry points of major stations for checking of luggage of passengers and use of Door Frame Metal Detectors (DFMD) and Hand-Held Metal Detectors (HHMD) are ensured.
    7. Time to time mock bomb blast drills are conducted at some major and sensitive Railways stations over Indian Railways by the Railway authorities in full coordination with sister agencies to check preparedness of the disaster management teams & equipments.
    8. Close liaison is made by the Railways with the State Police/GRP authorities, Central and State Intelligence agencies and Civil authorities at all levels for prevention of crime, registration of cases, their investigation and maintenance of law and order in Railway premises as well as on running trains.
    9. Frequent announcements are made through Public Address System to educate passengers to be alert and inform about unclaimed articles/bags/materials found at stations and in trains.
    10. RPF Special Task Force teams, Crime Prevention and Detection Squads etc. are functioning to curb passengers’ related offences. Surprise checks are conducted in night hours and staff are briefed to be extra vigilant and alert.
    11. Drives are conducted from time to time against the entry of unauthorized persons in trains and railway premises.

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