RPF of Tiruchi division will now provide escort up to Chennai, instead of alighting midway

Railway Protection Force (RPF) will modify its train escort system on select night trains leaving from Tiruchi and passing through it.

Four night trains — Tiruchi – Chennai – Tiruchi Rockfort express, Mannargudi – Chennai – Mannargudi Mannai, and Tenkasi – Chennai – Tenkasi Pothigai Expresses – have been identified. The system will be in place next month.

RPF teams of Tiruchi division would now provide escort up to Chennai, instead of alighting midway at Villupuram which is now the case.

In the existing pattern, escort teams from Tiruchi travel up to Villupuram and hand over charge to their Chennai counterparts as their jurisdiction ends at that station.

RPF officials told The Hindu that an escort team of RPF personnel would be sent from Tiruchi division up to Chennai in the four identified trains as per the modified plan.

The new system would do away with the present practice of Chennai team taking over at Villupuram in the identified trains, a senior officer said.

Instead, the Chennai teams would be utilised to escort some other trains as decided by the Chennai division, he added. Plagued by manpower shortage, the modified arrangement is aimed at optimum utilisation of manpower, one official said.

Since 2004, personnel of the RPF have been vested with the additional responsibility of escorting passenger trains following amendment in the RPF Act.

Personnel of the Government Railway Police are also deployed in train beats on several long distance trains along with RPF escort teams.