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News Entry# 289140
Dec 20 2016 (08:02)  Disability rights activist alleges threat by railway staff (www.thehindu.com)
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Commentary/Human InterestSR/Southern  -  

News Entry# 289140     
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Posted by: rdb*^  128423 news posts
A disability rights activist alleged that he was threatened by a man who claimed to be a railway emplloyee on the Vaigai Express on Monday.
T.M.N. Deepak, president, December 3 Movement, said he was travelling on the Vaigai Express from Tiruchi to Chennai.
“In Tiruchi, when I was boarding the compartment for persons with disabilities, I found it was completely encroached by people. Five people got down, all railway staff members. When I went in, there was someone lying on the upper berth. I asked him if he was a person with disability.
He said he was a railway staff. I told him that railway staff cannot encroach the compartment, but he did not leave,” said Mr. Deepak.
Mr. Deepak said he then attempted make a complaint over phone, and the man then left. “In Melmaruvathur, the man came again near the compartment and publicly threatened me, saying I would face dire consequences,” he said. When the train reached Chengalpattu, he said railway protection police personnel arrived, but could not find the man.
Mr. Deepak said he then went to the Southern Railway division office to take the matter forward.
In 2014, the then general manager of Southern Railway had announced a move to inspect all coaches for the disabled on trains.
A disability rights activist had pointed out that the staff needed to be trained and sensitised to ensure these incidents did not occur.
“This is a common problem. Many times, authorities have assured us of action, but this keeps happening. The encroachers are usually railway staff,” said S. Nambu Rajan, also a disability rights activist.
A senior official said they would inquire into the incident and take appropriate action.
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