Agnipath protests | Security beefed up at railway stations in Telangana

Railway Protection Force personnel patrolling a platform of the violence-hit Secunderabad railway station.

Railway Protection Force personnel patrolling a platform of the violence-hit Secunderabad railway station. | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

South Central Railway (SCR) has deployed personnel of Government Railway Police (GRP) and Railway Protection Force (RPF) at the stations under its jurisdiction in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and parts of Maharashtra and Karnataka in the wake of the arson at the Secunderabad station last Friday.

The security personnel conducted patrolling inside the stations with increased vigil on the platforms as well as on the trains to identify and thwart any potential trouble-makers, said senior officials on Sunday.

The Railway Board had alerted the zonal railways about strengthening security in view of agitators targeting the railway properties throughout the country in protest against the Centre’s Agnipath recruitment scheme to the armed forces. “Various department heads are making an assessment of the property destroyed during Friday’s violence, and a consolidated report will be sent to the Railway Board soon,” the officials explained.

The GRP has taken up investigation of the violence inside the Secunderabad station with the assistance of RPF and local police authorities. “The issue is that our security manpower is limited. We are totally dependent on the State forces, as it happened when groups of arsonists barged in from unguarded open access points to gain entry,” they said.

SCR managed to get train services back on track the same evening since there was no major disruption of the signal and communication network. The computerised Route Relay Interlocking (RRI) system which oversees simultaneous movement of about 250 trains daily at the station was very close to where the violence occurred.

There was also the diesel depot with more than 10,000 litres capacity for the engines to refill with underground tanks and pipelines for filling at the platforms within the vicinity. “Any damage to RRI or diesel tanks could have caused greater damage and led to a major disruption,” they said.

Meanwhile, disruptions in services towards Bihar and other places continue with 15 trains cancelled, two partially cancelled and three rescheduled. These include trains towards Danapur, Darbanga, Trivandrum, and Shalimar. A few other trains passing through the SCR for destinations up north have also been curtailed.

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Printable version | Jul 29, 2022 9:47:12 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/agnipath-protests-security-beefed-up-at-railway-stations-in-telangana/article65543106.ece