PRAYAGRAJ, September 14 (HS): During surprise raids conducted by railway authorities at Prayagraj Junction and Cheoki railway stations, over 300 ticketless passengers, nine people without face masks, and many illicit sellers were apprehended, according to railway officials on Tuesday. Officials claimed a male travelling ticket examiner (TTE) was suspended on the spot for missing from duty, while a female TTE was given a warning for playing games on her phone and failing to inspect people accessing the platform.
Following several complaints of illegal vendors and ticketless travellers, the raids were led by Vipin Singh, senior divisional commercial manager (SDCM-II), Prayagraj Division, on the orders of divisional railway manager (DRM) Mohit Chandra and additional divisional railway manager (ADRM) Ajit Kumar Singh. SDCM II led a Railway Protection Force (RPF) team that nabbed 311 passengers who were travelling without tickets on 11 trains, including the Bombay Mail, Mahanagari Express, Varanasi-Lokmanya Tilak Express, Mumbai Janata Express, Sarnath, Tapti Ganga, Danapur Special, and Patliputra-Lokmanya Tilak Express.
“These passengers were fined a total of Rs. 2.13 lakh. At the railway station, nine persons were also spotted roaming without masks. “A fine of Rs. 900 was also collected from them after they completed the requisite paperwork,” railway authorities added. Officials claimed they took action against two stall owners at the station and collected Rs. 1500 as a punishment for failing to retain adequate billing equipment and failing to post a “Don't pay if not billed” board as required by the railways. According to eyewitnesses, SDCM II arrived at Prayagraj Junction unannounced after instructing his driver to park the car.
“He came at platform numbers 9 and 10, where train number 08610 Lokmanya Tilak-Ranchi Express was stationed, with a ‘gamcha' (cotton cloth) over his face. Inside the train, more than ten illicit vendors were selling products to passengers, and the senior cop suddenly took out his phone and began filming them. As fear spread among the illegal merchants, several of them were apprehended by senior DCM-II and handed over to the authorities,” an officer who observed the searches stated. SDCM-II also inspected the LTT-Ranchi Express, where TTE Vinod Kumar, who was stationed on the platform, was suspended with immediate effect for being absent from duty.
“The senior DCM stood there and got the report ready, adding 10 traders to the blacklist who had been arrested. “He also asked the officials to levy a Rs. 10,000 fine on the vendor's contractor,” an official added. The official caught a lady TTE playing games on her phone and not verifying the passengers on foot crossing bridge II of the Prayagraj station, and issued her a warning.