: Two railway passengers of the Mumbai-Nagercoil Express were drugged and their valuables looted by unidentified persons. The passengers, who were detrained at Madurai railway station, were admitted to the Government Rajaji hospital on Friday night.

Balasubramanian (28) and Saravanan (29) were found unconscious in their seats when the train was nearing Madurai junction, Railway Protection Force (RPF) sources said. Alerted by the passengers of S-8 coach, the security personnel, including Tamil Nadu Railway Police (TRP), detrained them here at around 9.30 p.m.

Both the passengers were “highly toxicated” and were yet to gain full consciousness at the hospital. Both of them had boarded the train at Chatrapathi Shivaji Terminus in Mumbai.

Sources said that Balasubramanian of Kanyakumari was returning home after attending an interview for a job abroad. He is reported to have lost his laptop, two mobile phones, passport and other documents. Saravanan, who is working in a catering unit, lost three sovereigns of gold chain and ring and a suitcase containing, among other things, Rs. 5,000.

However, no other passenger in the compartment had complained of any missing valuable.

The victims had claimed that they had not taken any eatable or juice from any stranger during their journey. “The culprits could have drugged their food or water without the knowledge of the victims,” an official said. Going by their statements, the RPF suspect that they could have been drugged while the train was passing through Jolarpet.

Four Hindi-speaking passengers, who were travelling in the same compartment, have reportedly gone missing. “The suspects in their late thirties, who have boarded the train in Mumbai, are missing,” sources added.

As a special case, the RPF would conduct a parallel investigation, sources added. The security agencies are trying to identify the culprits by showing photographs of known criminals involved in drugging cases.

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