Patna, Feb. 2: Even lawmakers and their wives are vulnerable to train rowdies, the hooligans turning out to be railway officials.
BJP legislator from Agiyaon in Bhojpur district, Shivesh Kumar and his wife were misbehaved with by a group of railway employees while travelling in an AC compartment of the Danapur-Howrah Express on Friday night.
The employees of the railways, all in the age group of 25 to 35 years, threatened the MLA with dire consequences and made an attempt to assault him in the moving train between Patna and Patna City railway stations when he objected to their indecent behaviour.
The MLA and his young wife were misbehaved with for preventing the railway officials from drinking liquor in the running train. To their surprise, the coach attendant tried to shield the tormentors and warned the legislator against pulling the alarm chain.
The couple got reprieve only when they contacted the women’s helpline and apprised the senior officials of the government railway police in Patna of the matter.
The couple’s six-month-old daughter also suffered minor injuries when the tormentors tried to assault the MLA and one of them fell in the lap of his wife in a drunken state.
Patna superintendent of rail police Suresh Prasad Choudhary said two persons have been arrested in connection with the incident. An FIR has been lodged with the Patna Sahib Government Railway Police on the basis of the statement of the MLA’s wife, he added.
Station house officer of Patna Sahib GRP Vijay Kumar said the two arrested railway employees — Pankaj Kumar Singh (a travelling ticket examiner) and Saurabh Kumar (booking clerk) — were produced before the railway magistrate, who remanded them in judicial custody for two weeks.
Sources said the railway officials were going to Bandel in Bengal’s Hooghly district for training. Divisional railway manager, Danapur, L.M. Jha could not be contacted in spite of repeated attempts.
Narrating the incident, Kumar said he, along with his wife and daughter, had boarded the Howrah-bound train at Patna Junction around 9.10pm. They were travelling on berths 17 and 18 in coach AB-2. The MLA was not accompanied by his security guards.
“As soon as the train left Patna Junction, a group of eight to 10 persons occupied the berths in front of ours and started drinking. Initially, we ignored their activities despite the fact that consumption of alcohol is not allowed on trains,” the MLA told The Telegraph over phone from Calcutta.
He said that some other youths later joined the men. Throughout they used abusive language and started singing vulgar songs. When the MLA’s wife complained to coach attendant Jitendra Kumar, she was asked to keep quiet as they were staff.
“The men got agitated after my wife complained and became more aggressive. One of them was heard telling someone to get ready with firearms to teach us a lesson when the train reaches Mokama,” the MLA said.
Kumar said one of the tormentors caught hold of his collar while his wife screamed voice for help. Hearing her scream, the security guard of an additional district and sessions judge, who was also travelling in the same coach, came to their rescue.
The tormentors continued to hurl abuse, the MLA said. “Finding no way out, I pulled the alarm chain and the train stopped. Another coach attendant, who introduced himself as Akhilesh, arrived and sought to know the reason for pulling the alarm chain. When I asked him of the matter, he threatened to sue me and impose a fine. But he too sided with the TTEs and didn’t intervene even after my repeated requests,” the BJP leader said, adding that the coach attendant asked the driver to proceed.
After a while, Kumar’s wife called the women’s helpline. The staff at the helpline acted swiftly and informed the GRP officials. “I also spoke to one of my colleagues in Patna, who contacted senior GRP officials. Within half-an-hour, around 100 policemen reached Khushrupur railway station (where the train had stopped),” he said.