Railway Protection Force of South Eastern Railway has played a significant role in providing security to railway passengers as well as in guarding its property and vast installations. In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic followed by lockdowns, the movement of passenger trains has been suspended but the movement of Time Tabled Parcel Express Trains for transportation of essential commodities is still being run.
RPF Personnel of South Eastern Railway, during Lockdowns have been engaged on duty for protecting Railway assets at long areas of this railway. This is very difficult task to be on duty when the rest of the country has been staying in the safety of their homes. In such situation, RPF personnel have been performing their duties around the clock with a view to guard and protect railway properties spreading over 4 Divisions viz Kharagpur, Adra, Chakradharpur and Ranchi in the states of West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand. Since physical surveillance is some how difficult, SER’s RPF Personnel have been deploying Drones for security of huge railway assets.
The drones have been used to keep a watchful eye day and night in the entire network of SER. These drones are being used mainly at Yard Signalling Infrastructures, Wagon Stocks, Good Sheds , Station Relay Rooms etc. The concept of security patrolling through drones is being done since it is impossible to guard the huge assets wide-spread over SER. Keeping all around surveillance round the clock on the fixed and moving Railway assets is a challenging task during lockdowns.
RPF Personnel have deployed the drones to optimise Security Personnel’s effectiveness and proactivity. With the help of drone cameras, the images of railway areas are being captured to give the clear view of the area within a radius of 2 kilometres from suitable heights. Sniffer dogs have also been deployed to detect explosives, theft, criminal activities and security of railway assets during lockdowns.
This apart, SER’s RPF Personnel have been able to perform their multifarious duties during lockdowns. They have taken the role for providing meals and food packets to the needy and helpless people in the vicinity of railway areas. To prevent the spread of Coronavirus, RPF personnel have manufactured face masks and sanitizers as in-house production. These face masks and sanitizers have been distributed amongst RPF constables and their wards and have raised awareness about the threat of Covid-19 and social distancing.
Shramik Specials were being run to transport the migrant workers from various parts of the country. These Shramik Special trains were escorted by RPF Personnel over South Eastern Railway during lockdowns. Some special trains are running towards different cities of the country. There are Thermal Screening at all entry points of the stations. SER’s Security personnel have manned the entry points and have permitted the travellers to entry and exit. They have also ensured to aware the passengers the habit of wearing face masks and social distancing as precautionary measures to contain the spread of COVID-19.