That in running days the way between school and home is converted in a tragic way of death because either school authorities or state both have closed their eyes towards this important issue and hence these kids lose their lives on roads, railway tracks, in school buses, etc. And this loss can never be compensated in any manner. And the parents live the rest of their lives with mental trauma. We are losing the future of our nation in accidents.
That Indian Railways is a lifeline in India having largest rail network worldwide but the safety standards of India’s massive railway network, which operates 9,000 passenger trains and carries more than 23 million passengers every day. That mishaps at level crossings are the biggest killer accounting for 40% of train accidents and 66% of fatalities, reflecting the railways failure to man/secure these crossings or built road over bridges and road under bridges. There are 30,348 level crossings, of which around 40% (11,563) are unmanned. Before the recent mishap in which 19 innocent people along with 14 school going children died, 53 people have been killed in accidents on unmanned crossing since April 2014.
In this Context Hum Hindu Filed a Writ Petition No 761 /2014 in the Supreme Court of India, and Hon’ble Court issued many directions to ministry of railways and other respondents. One of the order is reproduced at here:
S U P R E M E C O U R T O F I N D I A
RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS
Writ Petition(s)(Civil) No(s).761/2014
AJAY GAUTAM Petitioner(s)
UNION OF INDIA AND ORS. Respondent(s)
Date : 27/02/2015 This petition was called on for hearing today.
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE MADAN B. LOKUR
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE UDAY UMESH LALIT
Mr. K. K. Mohan, Adv. (AC)
For Respondent(s) Ms. Kiran Suri, Sr. Adv.
Mr. T.N. Razdan, Adv.
Mr. Shreekant N. Terdal, AOR
UPON hearing the counsel the Court made the following
O R D E R
We have heard learned counsel for the parties.
All the parties are ad idem that accidents resulting
in injuries or deaths at unmanned railway crossings
should be stopped at the earliest. There are several
ways of achieving this objective.
Learned counsel for the Railways submits that a study
will be carried out at the earliest preferably within
four weeks to identify those unmanned railway crossings where accidents have taken place and to take remedial measures of either posting appropriate personnel at those railway crossings or closing them altogether or having some other alternative arrangements such as an over-pass
or under-pass or any other appropriate method.
She also submits that as per her information it is
proposed to take remedial measures to deal with 3500
railway crossings during the financial year 2015-16. She submits that priority will, of course, be given to those unmanned railway crossings where accidents have taken place.
Learned counsel for the Railways also submits that
she will check whether there is a policy that there will
be no unmanned railway crossing whenever new railway
lines are commissioned.
List the matter on 10th April, 2015.
(SANJAY KUMAR-I) (JASWINDER KAUR)
COURT MASTER COURT MASTER
Delhi-based priest in SC for children’s safety at unmanned level crossings
NEW DELHI: A Delhi-based priest on Friday prayed to the Supreme Court to direct the Centre and the states to take steps to prevent accidents involving school buses at unmanned level crossings across the country.
A bench headed by Chief Justice R M Lodha found the issue raised in the PIL by priest Ajay Gautam, who argued in person wearing a saffron kurta, important but appointed senior advocate Dinesh Dwivedi as amicus to spruce up the petition and weed out unnecessary pleadings.
Dwivedi agreed and sought three weeks time to present a better petition as amicus. The court said the petitioner had highlighted accidents at unmanned level crossings involving school buses in many states, resulting in death of several children. “The issue appears to be serious to us and we intend to entertain the petition,” the bench said before adjourning the case for three weeks.
Supreme Court demands Government action on deadly unmanned rail crossings
The Supreme Court has described as “serious” the fact that 40 per cent of railway level crossings across the country are unmanned, and account for 73 per cent of fatalities every year.
The court has issued notice to the Centre in response to a PIL demanding the deployment of guards or gates at all 30,348 crossings.
“Despite so many casualties, the Railways have not taken any action to ensure safety and security of the public. These unmanned crossings are not only dangerous for those crossing railway tracks but also for passengers in case the train derails,” said the PIL filed by Ajay Gautam, a priest.
According to a PIL, accidents at unmanned railway crossings claimed 350 to 400 lives every year
“The issue raised in the PIL is serious. We are issuing notice to the Centre and Railways. We would like to examine the whole issue as it involves the safety of the public and train passengers. We are appointing senior lawyer Dinesh Dwivedi to assist us in the matter as an amicus curiae,” said the court, while issuing notice to the Railways on Friday.
The PIL said 11,563 of 30,348 crossings – or roughly 40 per cent – were unmanned. Quoting the Railways’ figures, Gautam contended that mishaps at crossings caused the highest number of casualties among railway accidents. He said they accounted for 60 per cent of the accidents and 73 per cent of fatalities.
The PIL said accidents at unmanned crossings claimed 350 to 400 lives every year. The issue has been closely monitored by the apex court for six years after another PIL was filed by the NGO Con- sumer Education and Research Centre.
While appearing in court for the Railway Ministry, advocate Wasim A. Qadri had said in 2007 that a funds crunch was coming in the way of guarding all unmanned crossings