Railway authorities, police say it was a sabotage attempt
The brake pipes of a passenger train stationed at Nilambur at night for a 6.40 a.m. departure to Shoranur were found sawed on Thursday.
Railway authorities and the police said it was a sabotage attempt. They suspect the hand of extremist elements in it. The air-pressured twin rubber hose of train no. 654 was sawed at 20 places, believed to be using a hack-saw blade. The 25-mm-diameter brake pipe and the feeder pipe of the loco engine and seven coaches were cut.
After the 11-coach train had arrived at Nilambur at 9.30 p.m. on Wednesday, a Railway Protection Force (RPF) constable boarded it and was asleep in one of the coaches till morning. The loco pilot, the assistant loco pilot and the guard were asleep in the restroom. Divisional Railway Manager S.K. Raina said it was the first time that he had come across such a curious sabotage attempt. The police started an inquiry. Forensic experts examined the train and police dogs were brought. Superintendent of Police K. Sethuraman said a special squad led by U. Abdul Kareem, Deputy Superintendent of Police, would investigate the case.
Mr. Raina said Railways would keep a watch on the situation and would act on the basis of feedback from the investigating agency.
“Since this was an incident carried out by outsiders with some purpose, the police will have to act more than we ought to,” he said.
People had been demanding an RPF outpost and a high-mast light at Nilambur. Mr. Raina said more security personnel would be deployed there, if required. Leaving the lights on all night at Nilambur, where train operations close by 10 p.m., would not help prevent “such outside interference.”
The Nilambur-Mysore Railway Action Council, which works for the development initiatives on the Shoranur-Nilambur line, described the incident dastardly.
Biju Ninan, secretary of the council, said the culprits should be brought to book .