Lucknow, May 16: With a view to strengthening the security of women passengers in trains, the North Eastern Railway (NER) plans to deploy women police personnel on trains during night hours as well as install 'panic buttons' in coaches. Since the railways are focussing on "women and child safety" this year, it plans the deployment of women police personnel in sub-urban trains during night hours besides recruitment of women in the RPF among others, chief PRO of NER, said Sanjay Yadav.
With reports of mishappenings with women travelling alone in trains, the railways also propose to have 'panic buttons' in the coaches which will be linked with the guard coach, Yadav said. " These buttons, placed at convenient spots for easy reach of women travellers above the electric switches, when pressed will denote the coach where there is an emergency and the railway staff present in the train will be informed to promptly attend to the emergency," Yadav said.
Currently, women passengers have to depend on either on helpline numbers by call or SMS, or on chain-pulling in the emergency situation, but with this system immediate action can be taken, he said. Among the other measures proposed to ensure women safety are having a different colour on the coaches earmarked for women for easy identification, wire mesh in windows of ladies coaches.
"Work on these proposals was going on and there are chances that the one pertaining to 'panic button' will take shape this year itself," he added. Railways also propose a month-wise calendar of activities with the focus on women security and gender sensitisation and upgradation of all-India security helpline. It also proposes CCTV cameras in women coaches of suburban trains with live feed if possible, CCTV cameras on platforms to cover ladies coaches during a halt of trains, the amendment in the Railways Act to ensure enhanced punishment for offences pertaining to women, he said. It also intend special drive under the Railways Act to prosecute offenders, Yadav added.