The Railway Protection Force (RPF) of the Salem division under the Southern Railways has apprehended 109 criminals, who committed crimes against railway passengers and recovered valuables worth Rs 5.40 lakh, U Subba Rao, Divisional Railway Manager, Salem, has said.
Further, explaining the efforts by the Railways to make the journey safe and hassle-free for passengers, the DRM said that all important mail and express trains were provided with escorts during night. In a major anti-touts drive, 55 unauthorised travel agents have been arrested and railway tickets worth Rs 22.64 lakh seized. “Spot penalties for littering on railway premises have been imposed on 6,237 people and a fine amount of Rs 15.98 lakh collected. Around 393 runaway children were rescued and rehabilitated,” he said.
On the achievements, the DRM said that the Salem Division has recorded gross earnings for the financial year April 2018 to December 2019 of Rs 655.87 crore which is 25 per cent higher than the last year’s earnings of Rs 526.42 crore. “In addition, the passenger earnings increased by 4.61 per cent and freight earnings increased by 166.64 per cent. We have loaded 2.03 MTs of different types of commodities to various destinations across the country surpassing our target of 1.45 MTs,” he said.
On improving passenger amenities, Subba Rao said, “In a bid to make the stations differently-abled friendly, braille boards were kept in Coimbatore station and similar facility is being provided in Salem, Karur and Erode districts. The battery car services in prevalence in Erode, Salem and Coimbatore will be introduced in Karur also. And in the second phase, Platform No 5 of Salem station will be provided with an escalator, lift and improved cover over platform by end of this financial year. After Coimbatore and Mettupalayam, work is underway to bring Karur, Erode and Salem under CCTV surveillance,” he said.
Meanwhile, amidst tight security, the Republic Day celebrations were observed in the Western region with pomp and gaiety.