Train Robbery: How Criminals Use Rs 2 Coins to Control Rail Signals For Looting Trains

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New Delhi, Nov 16: The Greater Noida Police recently arrested two members of a gang involved in train robberies. During interrogation, the men revealed how they managed to stop trains using a Rs 2 coin to loot passengers at gun point. The police had launched a manhunt after receiving numerous complaints of robbery and snatching on trains in Greater Noida, Dadri and Bulandshahr areas.

The modus operandi of these criminals not only stunned the police but has also raised serious questions over rail safety.

How They Do it

After receiving several complaints about robberies on trains, the Greater Noida police installed CCTV cameras near railway tracks at selected areas. They couldn’t believe what they saw while scanning through the images captured by the CCTV cameras.

A camera had captured how one of the arrested men used Rs 2 coin to turn the rail signal red to stop the train. The man was seen swiftly placing a coin in a joint of the railway track while talking over his mobile phone. (Also Read: Robbers break into Haridwar Express train, loot jewellery, cash)

The arrested men told the cops that they have robbed at least six trains through this Rs 2 coin ‘technique’ so far but said they had no idea how it triggers a change in the status rail signal.

The Mechanics Behind Rs 2 Coin Trick

The trick used by the robbers to manipulate train signalling system is based on pure science. The Indian Railways uses a circuit system which runs along the tracks. The insulating between each block of tracks acts as circuit breaker. If a metal object is placed in the insulation in such a way that it touches the two ends of the track, then it’ll turn the signal red as it will complete the circuit acting as a conductor.

‘Isolated Incident’

Despite a serious security lapse being exposed, Indian Railways maintains that there is nothing serious and described it as an ‘isolated’ incident.

“Anyone having a bit of technical knowledge can tinker with the signalling system but these are isolated incidents. We have also installed CCTV cameras at vulnerable places where there have been attempts to fiddle with signalling system,” Anil Saxena, spokesperson, Indian Railways, said.

This is not for the first time such an incident has been reported. In 2011-12, dacoits had used the same trick to loot a train in Danapur near Bihar’s capital Patna.