Voicing serious safety concerns over encroachments along rail tracks and trespassing which claim nearly 15,000 lives every year, a high-level railway panel has suggested amendments to existing acts and setting up of a task force in Mumbai where such deaths are highest.
"No civilised society can accept such massacre on their own railway system," the Anil Kakodar-led safety committee said and suggested amendments in the Public Premises Eviction Act and the Railway Act by which encroachers would be severely penalised.
"The committee was informed that a large number of accidents take place because of unlawful trespassing. The estimation is almost 15,000 persons get killed every year in such a manner in the entire railway system of which about 6000 death are only in Mumbai suburban section," it said.
It made these suggestions while taking into account the problems faced while removing enrichment due to political interference.
Terming as "massacre", the huge number of deaths especially in the Mumbai section, the committee said that reluctance of Indian Railways to own these casualties, which do not fall under the purview of train accidents but are nevertheless accidents on account of trains can by no means be ignored.It said the "grim system on Mumbai suburban system has to be tackled on a different war footing where trespassing takes places mostly on account of lack of barricading, fencing, absence of adequate number of pedestrian over-bridges and reluctance to replace pedestrian level.