Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Unruly Mob and Soft State


I fail to understand how on earth anybody can be run over by a moving train. A train on the move makes enough noise, besides whistle of a train is shrill enough to awaken a dead person from grave. Yet in Bihar, it happened close to hundred pilgrims came under the wheels of a moving train. Thirty seven people died and close to eighty people were injured.



Two trains unloaded passengers on two platforms of Dhamara station in Bihar. The middle track was used to allow passage of an express train, Rajya Rani Express, that does not stop at the station.

Question is why were these passengers not getting off on the platform, but on the wrong side? Were these people brain dead, deaf and dumb that they could not hear, see or understand that a fast moving train is approaching? Somewhere I read, people expected the train driver should stop seeing people crossing the tracks. Only in India, read north India, people expect fast moving trains, buses and cars must stop on their tracks if they see a group of people crossing road or railway track.

What is more disturbing that people beat up the driver and other railway employees, torched a few coach and caused generalized damage to railway property. Total estimated cost of damage is around 100 crore rupees. Who will fund for this damage. What is the fault of the driver of express train?

I read our prime minister has expressed grief at the incidence. Bihar chief minister has thought incidence was unfortunate. I think the incidence should be dubbed foolish. All people engaged in arson must be jailed and penalized to recover the cost of damage to railway property. I am sure, some politicial leader of some party must have mobilized the vandals. Catch hold of the goon and disbar him from parliament or assembly or whatever his affiliation.

May be on the hindsight, railway should have advice people to use foot overbridge. To compensate some people that lack commonsense, then go on to damage public property, I think it is outrageous waste of taxpayers money. Again shows our priorities are on the wrong place. Instead of disciplining unruly mob, we try to mollycoddle them and give an impression everything is alright. All, at the expense of public exchequer. I am certain few days later it will be claimed these were poor people, so government must help. But what has poverty got to do with foolishness and lack of common sense?
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