Mumbai's railway stations to become safer by January next year

Mumbai's railway stations to become safer by January next year

According to railway officials, in the first phase of the project, they will cover major stations of categories A1, A, B and C out of the total 756 stations.

Shashank RaoUpdated: Wednesday, July 06, 2022, 08:52 PM IST
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More than 80 stations on Central and Western Railways across Mumbai will be enveloped with a high-quality, high-speed video surveillance system (VSS) and a network of CCTV cameras. This is part of Indian Railways' large scheme of things under the 'Nirbhaya Fund' where 756 railway stations will be covered including Mumbai suburban rail.

RailTel, a Mini-Ratna, is implementing this VSS project and has finalized the agencies for executing the job. According to railway officials, in the first phase of the project, they will cover major stations of categories A1, A, B and C out of the total 756 stations.

These include the 80 plus railway stations - of which 74 are on the Central Railway and 7 on the Western Railway falling under Mumbai's suburban rail network on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT)-Kasara/Karjat/Panvel and Churchgate-Dahanu - that is likely to be completed by January 2023. On the CR there are in total 115 stations and 50 stations on WR that will get this security cover.

"We have tried to encompass even the smaller stations that fall under Category C so that every inch of our rail premises are monitored," said a senior railway official.

Some of the railway stations in Mumbai that will get this protective cover through a web of CCTVs are Airoli, Ambernath, Badlapur, Chembur, Chunabhatti, Diva, Dombivli, Boisar, Dahanu, Vangaon etc.

These IP-based VSS will be installed at the waiting halls, reservation counters, parking areas, main entrance/exit points, booking offices, platforms, foot over bridges etc.

There are 4 types of IP cameras -Dome type, bullet types, Pan Tilt Zoom type and Ultra HD-4k -that are being installed to ensure maximum coverage of the Railway premises. This will give an extra edge to the railway police to ensure enhanced security. The recording of the video feeds from CCTVs will be stored for 30 days.

Ashwani Vaishnaw, Union Minister for Railways said, "We Need to rapidly absorb new technology in Railways, be it for rolling stock, construction, safety, cyber security, or in situations where there is a human interface”.

These CCTVs are being networked on optical fibre cable and the video feed of the CCTV cameras will be displayed not only at local RPF posts but also at a centralized CCTV control room at divisional and zonal levels. The system comes with Artificial Intelligence enabled Video Analytics Software and Facial Recognition Software which will help to detect known criminals triggering an alert when they enter station premises. It can be viewed from any web browser by authorized personnel.

Aruna Singh, Chairman and Managing Director, RailTel assured that with the finalization of the executing agencies, the implementation of the project will be fast-tracked.

The VSS system shall capture face images from live CCTV video feed and generate alerts if a blacklist match is found. It will have a feature wherein in case of any emergency, the authorized users can upload videos and snapshots through mobile phones on the server that will also include identification of location.

Some of the safety features of this system include Intrusion Detection (People entering railway operation areas), camera tampering, loitering detection, human & vehicle detection, based on attributes, colour, and combination search. It will also have two Panic Buttons that will be installed at each Platform. Once the panic button is activated by any person in distress, an alarm shall appear on the system along with the pop-up of the associated camera that will then pan on the person in distress who pushed the button.

The recording of the video feeds from CCTVs of stations will be stored in the nearest RPF Thana for 30 days for playback, post-event analysis and investigation purposes. Important videos to be stored for a longer duration at Data Centre by using 240TB storage.

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