Railway panel finds glaring security loopholes, pulls up Ambala station officials

Indian Railways Passenger Amenities Committee (PAC), which conducted the annual inspection of Chandigarh railway station recently, slammed officials of the Ambala division of Northern Railway after seeing no improvement since last year’s inspection. A PAC member, who conducted the inspection, said there was a complete “security lapse” at the station. “The first impression of today’s inspection was that there is a security lapse. It is going to be a world class station and needs to be well organised. They should upgrade CCTV cameras, metal detectors and have latest gadgets,” Ashok Tripathi, a PAC member, told the media. He said the problems highlighted by the PAC last year existed even today. “There has not been much improvement,” he claimed.

About the “closure” of the executive lounge at the station, which was inaugurated by Chandigarh MP Kirron Kher, Tripathi said, “It is the weakness of the administration if they have not opened it. Action will be taken against the officials if found guilty.” During the inspection, the PAC member questioned the railway officials about the opening of the executive lounge at the station. “There should be a bigger AC. It has to be changed. What have you done so far in six months after the inauguration? Nothing,” he told the officials of the Ambala division.

The PAC also found the washrooms unhygienic and asked the officials to consider providing washroom facility free of cost to passengers. At the station, while interacting with the passengers, the team was informed about the quality of food, absence of dormitory, basic facilities at the station and no proper toilets inside the trains. A passenger even complained that the station lacked proper internet connectivity.

India is deploying along its volatile border with Pakistan a smart Israel-developed fencing system having a ‘quick response team’ mechanism which strikes when the CCTV-powered control room detects an infiltration attempt.