Admitting shortage of railway police personnel to guard women compartments in suburban trains, Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil has said he has apprised Union Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge about it.
"About 574 compartments out of the total 936 reserved for women on suburban trains do not have railway police personnel," Patil said in Mumbai recently.
"RPF personnel are deployed on duty in 362 local train compartments reserved for women. As per the directions given by GRP, RPF personnel should be on duty in the ladies' compartment from 8 pm to early morning," he said.
"We have also demanded to sanction 2,208 posts of RPF for the metropolis to ensure women's security in local trains and at the railway stations," he said.
Patil said he had informed the Union railway minister last month about the issue by sending him a letter and demanded sanction of additional RPF staff to prevent sexual harassment incidents in local trains.
Alarmed by the spate of eve-teasing and molestation incidents in local trains in the metropolis, Patil has ordered the Government Railway Police to take stringent action to curb such crimes.
"We are taking strict action against those who are found eve-teasing and molesting women commuters," Patil said.
The GRP had (recently) arrested about 11 people on charges of eve-teasing and molestation, he added.
Image: A policewoman is pictured inside a ladies’ compartment of a Mumbai local train
Photograph: Punit Paranjpe/Reuters