New Delhi: A sportswoman's tragedy inside a moving train has focused attention on safety in India's largest transporting network.
The outcry has also helped bring some relief and hope for the Sonu Sinha who lost her leg. Currently under treatment in a Bareily hospital, she has been offered a job in the Indian Railways and full rehabilitation.
"Railway will be bearing the complete medical expenditure," said Railway Board Chairman Vivek Sahai.
The Sports Ministry, which initially offered her a compensation of Rs 25,000, topped it with Rs 2 lakh medical insurance.
"We will give Rs 2 lakh for medical allowance to volleyball player Sonu Sinha. If needed more, we will provide more," said Sports Minister Ajay Maken.
Sonu lost her leg, when she was thrown off a running train near Bareilly station in Uttar Pradesh, while she was trying to defend herself from three men attempting to rob her.
As she fell on to the tracks, she was hit by another train. Her left leg below the knee was crushed. Sonu lay bleeding on the tracks for six to seven hours. She was found later by the railway police. The Prime Ministers office has asked for a report from the Railways.
This incident has raised several disturbing questions - could the presence of Railway Police have prevented the tragedy? Shouldn't the country's biggest carrier get a system in place to ensure greater passenger security? What really were Sonu's co-passengers doing when she was thrown off the train?
"Civil Society is equally responsible. Had they helped her, it wouldn't have happened," said NCW Chairperson Yasmin Abrar.
But who really is responsible for safety of passenger on trains? On February 2, 18 ITBP job seekers traveling on the rooftop of a train were crushed by a low over bridge near Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh. At that time too, the Railway said law and order is a state subject and the Mayawati government passed the buck.
"She said one of them tried to rob her. Although the chain is still around her neck," said ADG AK Jain.
The Uttar Pradesh government has announced Rs 1 lakh compensation for Sonu Sinha and also ordered probe by a DIG level officer.
But, lost in all this is a young sportswoman's future.