Malda, 28 October
The wife of an Army officer fell prey to molestation allegedly by a travelling ticket examiner (TTE) Nirmal Ojha while she was travelling with her husband in an air-conditioned three-tier compartment on the Guwahati-bound Brahmputra mail last night. The accused TTE was arrested by the government railway police (GRP) after the train reached Malda early this morning. The Divisional railway manager (DRM) of Malda division of eastern railway, Mr Rabindra Gupta, suspended the TTE and ordered a departmental probe against him.
The woman passenger (23) said that she and her husband, an Army officer from Nagrakata of Jalpaiguri and posted at Kachh of Gujrat, were travelling in the B-1 coach of 14056 Brahmputra mail plying between New Delhi and Guwahati. She alleged that somewhere between between Tildanga and Farakka stations in the Malda division of the eastern railway she suddenly felt that someone’s hand was moving along her body as she was resting on her berth number 15. As she got up being frightened, she found that TTE Nirmal Ojha was scuttling away from her.
As she yelled, other passengers and her husband got up from their sleep and started looking for the TTE who had by then fled to B-2 coach.
The irked passengers dragged him back by his collar to the woman and started beating him profusely. The accused TTE asked for pardon but the public beating continued.
The Railway protection force (RPF) personnel on the train rushed to the spot and rescued Ojha from the passengers’ ire. An RPF officer, Mr Dulal Biswas, immediately communicated the matter to the GRP and RPF of Malda station.
After the train reached Malda town station around 3.40 a.m, the TTE was handed over to the GRP by the RPF personnel. The passengers of the train however continued demonstrations at platform no. 4 of the station. The GRP and RPF had to struggle to mitigate the demonstrations. Even after the woman passenger lodged a complaint with Malda GRP, the demonstration continued. The irked passengers stopped the train by pulling chains twice demanding the complaint number from the GRP. After the complaint was lodged, the passengers allowed the train to leave.
The Inspector-in-charge (IC) of Malda GRP, Mr Sujit Ghosh, said: “A TTE was arrested on charge of molesting a woman in Brahmputra mail last night. He was produced in court today.”
The TTE ~ Ojha, on the contrary, denied charges against him. He claimed that he boarded the train from Jamalpur and while he was preparing the ticket of a passenger, the woman falsely accused him of molestation which never happened earlier in his 25 years of service life.”
The Malda DRM, Mr Kumar, said: “The TTE was suspended and a probe was ordered against him.”
Malda, 28 October