A long distance journey in the South-Eastern Railway is now to be safer for women passengers. The zonal railway has introduced ‘Operation My Saheli’ which is an initiative to enhance safety of women passengers inside trains during long distance journeys.

In the new initiative, the team members of the project including young women subinspectors of the railways stay in constant touch with the on-board women passengers of long distance trains.

“The mobile numbers of the women passengers are collected by the group members of Operation My Saheli during the commencing of the journey and a broadcast group on social media platform is created,” informed the IG-cum Principal Chief Security Commissioner, South Eastern Railway, D. B.Kasar.

“Strict privacy policy is maintained during the broadcasting and it is ensured that the mobile numbers or other personal information of the passengers is not revealed to other passengers. In addition to this, from the source till the destination stations, the Operation My Saheli group members get into the trains and interact with the woman passengers or even call them randomly to find out if any of the travellers are facing some issues,” he added.

Initially three of SER have been taken under the pilot project. The Howrah-Yesvantpur Duronto Special train has been taken as the first pilot train followed by HowrahAhmedabad Special and Howrah-Mumbai Special.

If scheduled stoppage stations fall at night from 11pm to 6am the RPF staff remain present outside the train and enter only if required. At destination point, feedback is taken from lady passengers. In case of long distance journeys that generally involve more than one zonal railways, the same strategy of interaction is followed, according to SER officials.

The women passengers are also informed about the location including the last station that the train has passed through. Apart from the existing helplines of the railways, the on-board women travellers are able to report the crisis or emergency situations to the officials or the Operation My Saheli’ numbers.

The project ‘Operation My Saheli’ is being run on an experimental basis in the SER jurisdiction and will help in providing end-to-end security to women passengers inside trains while travelling.

The project will later be expanded in other zonal railways, informed the officials. The project is being under the framework of ‘Nirbhaya Fund’, without any additional expenditure by the Railways.