States oppose ministry's plans to manage GRP

States oppose ministry's plans to manage GRP

The Railway Ministry’s attempt to take over the operational control of Government Railways Police (GRP) for effective policing of passengers and assets has invited stiff resistance from states.

At least 17 states have opposed the move when the ministry had sought their opinion as it wanted optimum utilisation of the two police forces – the Railway Protection Force (RPF) being the other — at its disposal.  While the RPF is under the ministry, states have jurisdiction over the  Government Railway Police (GRP) that essentially performs the duty much like that of a district police in their own jurisdictions.

Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu, replying to queries on passengers safety, told the Lok Sabha that to bring synergy in the role of the GRP and the RPF, the Centre had sought states views on taking over operational control of the railway police.

Prabhu stated that while some states supported the idea, 17 have not given their concurrence.

“To create a more effective security mechanism over Indian Railways, a proposal for amendment in the RPF Act has been moved by the Ministry of Railways with the approval of the Ministries of Law and Home Affairs. This will empower the RPF to deal with serious crimes in passenger areas,” Prabhu said in a written reply.

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