Mumbai, March 9: In order to provide complete safety for the women in a train, Western Railway (WR) installed a `talk-back' communication system in ladies' coaches to allow them to alert the guard in an emergency.
The talkback system is placed in the ladies coach of two trains on an experimental basis and is an initiative to improve women security, especially when they are traveling at odd hours. The system is tested on trains running between Churchgate and Virar.
The passenger talkback system at the doorway of each ladies compartment allows two-way communication and placed at an accessible height. At the press of a button, a communication channel will be opened with the train’s guard. Air-conditioned locals, expected to be introduced soon, will also have this system.
The WR has awarded the tender for the same to a Belgium company called Telvic which also currently provides the system through which a motorman talks to the commuters informing them why a train is stuck between stations owing to technical glitches. However, this system is similar to the ones used in the Metro rail.
Earlier, Central Railway (CR) had an emergency alarm system, which, at the press of a panic button, alerted the guard and motorman about a `threat' in the compartment. However, there were several instances of people pressing the button for no reason, affecting train punctuality as its crew rushed to attend to the coach just to find that somebody had played a prank. Now, CR is also thinking to work on the talkback system as it is more reassuring for a commuter in distress and is unlikely to be misused.
Notably, molestations and robbery in running train have become common these days and women are not safe. Therefore Western Railway has taken a concrete step to safeguard women.