A Government Railway Police (GRP) sub-inspector (SI) has been suspended for taking too much time to lodge a complaint on January 18 after a Tata Steel employee lost his luggage while travelling in South Bihar Express.
The suspension of Anugrah Narain Singh, the SI on duty at the Patna GRP station when the Tata Steel employee came to lodge a complaint, would be effective from January 19.
Additional director-general of police (rail) Paras Nath Roy took the decision to initiate disciplinary action against the SI on January 19, the day the report was published in The Telegraph. But he issued a formal notification in this regard on Monday because he was not available at the police headquarters.
Roy said he ordered the suspension of Singh for inordinate delay in lodging the victim's complaint.
He also ordered a detailed probe into the theft of luggage from an AC coach of 13287 South Bihar Express on January 18.
"I was shocked to learn that the victim was made to wait at the police station for about three hours on the pretext of lodging the complaint," Roy said.
Deputy superintendent of police (rail) Sanjay Kumar has been assigned to carry out the investigation into the theft case. He has been asked to submit the report at the earliest.
"I took cognisance of the report published in The Telegraph and suspended the police officer on duty immediately," he said, adding that it was also true that the officer finally registered the FIR on the basis of the victim's statement.
The ADG (rail) said fresh instructions had been issued to all the superintendents of rail police (SRPs) to prevent such incidents on moving trains. They have been asked to identity the gangs operating in their jurisdiction and take appropriate action to check them, he added.
The Tata Steel employee, Jitendra Mohan Sinha, is not satisfied with the disciplinary action taken against the police officer though.
Jamshedpur-based Sinha said he would be satisfied only after the articles stolen from his luggage were recovered.
"Suspension of an officer is not the solution to the problem. The main problem is the passengers' safety. Even those travelling in AC coaches are not safe. The railways should think over it and ensure the safety of the passengers," he told The Telegraph over phone from Jamshedpur.
On January 18, luggage lifters had stolen Sinha's two suitcases between Mokama and Patna Sahib railway stations. He claimed that his biggest loss was his medical examination reports.
"I have a family doctor in Patna because I frequently travel to the Bihar capital from Jamshedpur. I was supposed to meet the medic during my stay in the capital but I lost all the relevant documents," he said.
He added that he had to even cancel the appointment with the doctor.
"Nobody keeps photocopy of the medical test reports. Now, my doctor has to start the treatment afresh," he added.
Besides the medical reports, Sinha's wife Neeta lost ornaments, including those gifted to the couple at the time of their wedding.
The 50-year-old has also sought the intervention of Railway Protection Force (RPF) officers in ensuring safety of passengers.
"I have written to the top officers of the RPF and the railways to draw their attention towards the employees deployed on important trains. The conduct of the coach attendant of B1 (AC two tier) was suspicious throughout the journey," Sinha said.
He added that neither the coach attendant nor the train ticket examiner bothered to take notice of the loss of the suitcases.
"The coach attendant was allowing unauthorised passengers to travel in the AC two-tier coach throughout the journey," Sinha said.