Passengers, who were traveling by the Bhubaneswar-New Delhi Rajdhani Express which was held up by Maoist-backed agitators for over five hours on Tuesday in West Midnapore in West Bengal, on Wednesday voiced their apprehensions over the lack of security measures in passenger trains.
"There was no security arrangement in the train. No security personnel of the police department or the railway police force were there. If we are traveling by the Rajdhani Express, then why is the railway department not proving us any safety guidance," rued passenger Vipin Shrivastav.
Recalling the fear and anxiety in their minds and raising serious questions about the lack of security measures in long-distance trains, Babu, another passenger, said, "Lots of people surrounded the train. There was no police there. People locked the doors of the train from inside. But somehow they broke the windowpanes and came inside and asked everyone to vacate the compartments. There were absolutely no security arrangements in the train. There was not even a single security personnel."
Police took control of the stranded high-speed train at approximately 10 pm on Tuesday.
"There were nearly 400 to 500 people. They created a nuisance and the driver stopped the train. The train was halted for quite a long time. Later, when the police came, they gave up," informed K Mahato, assistant driver, Rajdhani Express.
On Tuesday, the agitators stopped the train at Bashthala and kidnapped the driver, demanding the release of jailed Maoist leader Chhatradhar Mahato.