The Railway Protection Force (RPF) in Dhanbad division has stepped up vigil to thwart drug and loot gangs that become active on crowded trains ferrying people home in the run up to Chhath.
Led by commandant Shashi Kumar, the RPF men on Wednesday embarked on the drive to nab suspected gang members who usually target passengers in general compartments — labourers, coal workers and shopkeepers who head home at this time of the year, often carrying large amounts of cash.
To start with, the control room number of Dhanbad division — 97771445187 — is being flashed on all platforms.
Banners displaying phone numbers of Government Railway Police at important stations of the division, RPF posts, superintendents of railway police and emergency control rooms have also been put up at all stations.
RPF and Government Railway Police personnel engaged in escort duty on trains have been asked to remain extra vigilant, particularly on trains going from Dhanbad to Patna, Vaishali, Darbhanga, Saharsa, Saran, Muzaffarpur, Siwan, Buxar and Ara and on those trains from Howrah, Mumbai and Delhi.
Plainclothes RPF men are being deputed in all general compartments where criminals drug co-passengers after befriending them, and decamp with their valuables and cash once they are unconscious.