Tamil Nadu

At Chennai Park railway station, beware of the dog

Chinnaponnu, an abandoned pet dog has made Chennai Park Railway station her home for over two years now.

Chinnaponnu, an abandoned pet dog has made Chennai Park Railway station her home for over two years now.   | Photo Credit: B. Jothi Ramalingam

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Abandoned pet joins forces with RPF personnel at a suburban station in Chennai

It’s the most ubiquitous sight across the country — a dog curled up on a railway platform — and would hardly merit a second look.

Meet Chinnaponnu, an abandoned dog who is now assisting RPF personnel at Chennai Park Railway Station

But the black-and-tan dog asleep under an old fan near the Station Master’s room at the Chennai Park Railway Station in Tamil Nadu is no ordinary canine but an active volunteer with the Railway Protection Force (RPF) unit deployed at the busy commuter hub in the city.

Chinnaponnu, who was abandoned at the station over two years ago, has seriously taken up the job of assisting the RPF in warning commuters illegally crossing the railway tracks and those travelling on the footboard of the suburban trains.

“She is not a trained dog but after watching us warning people crossing the tracks and travelling on the footboard, Chinnaponnu has learnt the drill. As we do our duty, she joins us and does her ‘duty’,” says RPF head constable G.C.D. Chiranjeevi.

Duty beckons: Chinnaponnu barking at footboard travellers at the Chennai Park Railway Station.

Duty beckons: Chinnaponnu barking at footboard travellers at the Chennai Park Railway Station.  

 

When some passengers discreetly attempt to cross the tracks behind the back of the policemen on duty, Chinnaponnu barks and alerts them. She also makes sure that nobody travels on footboard.

V. Senthamizhan, who works at a kiosk at the station, says the dog keeps to herself but is watchful of the surroundings. “She once helped the police catch a man who was running away after snatching the mobile phone of a commuter,” recalls S. Sureshbabu, who works at another kiosk.

“I saw her owner from Tiruvannamalai, who said the family had to abandon her because their landlord did not allow them to keep a pet at home. But, they visit her once a month. It was from them we got to know her name is Chinnaponnu,” says Sureshbabu.

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 12:50:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/at-chennai-park-railway-station-beware-of-the-dog/article29986158.ece

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