To enhance safety of railway commuters in the wake of increased traffic at Ghatkopar railway station with the start of the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar Metro, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) has gone for “strategic deployment” of its personnel by creating an outpost at Ghatkopar railway station.
There has been an 11 per cent rise in the number of passengers at Ghatkopar railway station after the start of the Metro service. RPF officers gave a proposal to the Central Railway (CR) to shift its outpost at Sion railway station to Ghatkopar station earlier in March, citing the increase in commuter traffic.
“In view of coming up of Metro station at Ghatkopar and the long term need of crowd management, the strategic deployment was planned a few months back,” said Alok Bohra, senior Divisional Security Commissioner, RPF, CR.
With the CR headquarters approving the proposal recently, the RPF has re-deployed 30 RPF personnel from Sion to Ghatkopar railway station.While the staff has already been shifted, a request has been sent to the railways to create a physical structure to accommodate the staff near the booking office towards the east side of the station.
An outpost is typically headed by a sub-inspector and has about 20 RPF personnel. As per requirement or during emergency, the outpost dispatches RPF personnel to the concerned spot.
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“The outpost at Sion is very close to the one at Dadar. Also, there are repeated complaints of scuffles between commuters and railway staff at Ghatkopar, Vikhroli and Kanjurmarg railway stations due to a high footfall. Since the next available outpost is at Thane, it was decided to shift the one at Sion to Ghatkopar to improve response time,” said an officer.
The RPF also sought a similar proposal for Asangaon and Badlapur railway stations.