Great Rajdhani Robbery: August Kranti passengers looted of Rs 15 lakh
Despite tall claims by the government about security on trains, passengers of nine coaches of Rajdhani August Kranti Express were drugged and robbed in the wee hours of Wednesday. Over Rs 10-15 lakh in cash has been robbed from them.
According to police, the passengers travelling on board the Rajdhani Express, from Mumbai to Nizamuddin, were robbed near Kota in Rajasthan around 4 am.
"The passengers were drugged and when they fell unconscious, the thieves targeted them and stole the cash and jewellery estimated to be around Rs 10-15 lakh," said a senior police official.
The Mumbai-Nizamuddin Rajdhani is one of the premium and most sought-after trains on the route. Railway minister Suresh Prabhu said CCTV cameras are being installed in coaches to keep a check on such incidents.
When the train arrived at Nizamuddin railway station, the victim passengers approached police and reported the matter.
"A total of 12 passengers have filed FIRs in connection with the theft. Empty wallets and purses were found dumped near the toilets and vestibules of the train," said the police.
Nine coaches of the train - all AC-2 tier and AC-3 tier - were targeted by the thieves leading to a robbery of estimated Rs 10-15 lakh, according to preliminary reports.
As per the statements given by the passengers, it is suspected that the robbery took place at the time when the train was left unguarded at Kota station for the change of staff.
"I have lost valuables and cash worth Rs 50,000... I have heard that at least seven-eight coaches are affected," said a woman who alleged that the train was left virtually unguarded when there was a change of staff at Kota station.
Meanwhile, another passenger complained that her iPhone, passport, Aadhaar card and Rs 18,000 in cash had been stolen.
Another victim told police, "In the midnight, many of us felt that we suddenly fell deep into sleep and when we woke up in the wee hours, we learnt that our purses have been stolen. After learning about the theft, we informed the attendant who didn't pay any heed to it."
One of the victims said when the search was made in the train, few empty purses were found in the washroom.
The Railway Police Force said it has information about at least six passengers being robbed and it will file an FIR or formal complaint.
It is worth mentioning that in April, robbers struck the Delhi-Patna Rajdhani Express at a place in Bihar and made away with cash and jewellery worth lakhs from sleeping passengers.