7 Hills Express robbery exposes chinks in security
Anantapur: The shocking robbery in 7 Hills Express train on Friday night exposes the shallow security arrangements of railways and the insecurity...
Anantapur: The shocking robbery in 7 Hills Express train on Friday night exposes the shallow security arrangements of railways and the insecurity concerns of railway users. Train robbery incidents recurrence after 3 years or more has suddenly awakened security officials out of their slumber.
The fact that the incident occurred on the outskirts of Tunakapalle Railway station is all the more shocking as it is a mainline station and did not have even a nominal security or a single armed guard. The gang of 5 suspected to be an inter-state dacoity gang appeared to have done everything in a hurry fearing sudden arrival of police or security personnel. While the gang had taken the trouble of cutting traffic signals and successfully engineered an unscheduled stoppage of the train, the dacoity gang confined their robbery to just two train bogies and that too to two women passengers. This suggests that the dacoits had their own fears of sudden arrival of police anytime. This is a rare case of dacoits looting only two passengers. The modus operandi of the dacoits in cutting off traffic signal lights to stop a train abruptly is something which gave a clue to other dacoits that they can stop trains in this fashion at unpopulated locations far away from railway stations. In the past before the Covid Pandemic, when train burglaries occurred, armed security personnel manned important express trains but after the pandemic the practice stopped. Now it looks like there is every need for posting armed police personnel in every important express train. This will act as a deterrent from rail burglaries. Before the pandemic three train burglaries occurred in the Guntakal division, prompting the railway authorities to post security personnel in running trains. Police suspect the involvement of Sholapur gang in the recent incident near Gooty. About 150 trains operate in the division. Out of which 78 have armed security. General Railway Police used to be posted in some trains. Due to pandemic, security personnel could not be spared by the Railways this year and so the recurrences of the rail burglaries. Meanwhile Railway SP Anil Babu and civil ASP Nagendrudu launched investigation into the Friday incident. The dacoits had cut signal wires as per their well-planned strategy and indulged in the looting of only gold and nothing else. Clues team have arrived to take fingerprints of the accused.