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History of RPF


The Railway Protection Force has its origin since 1882 when the Railway Companies then in existence appointed their own security for each Department.  This arrangement   was   found   to be fairly satisfactory till 1918. With an increase in traffic; there was a steep rise in the incidence of thefts of goods entrusted to Railways. This led to the Government of India to appoint a committee to enquire into causes thereof and suggest corrective measures.

Acting on the Committee’s recommendations, most of the Class I Railways reorganized their security as a separate unit under a superior officer.  But this too proved inadequate, and in the aftermath of the Second World War, losses due to thefts and claims on the Railways assumed huge size and needed serious attention.  

The  Government  of  India,  therefore in year 1954,  instituted  a  special  enquiry  through  Director, Intelligence Bureau (Ministry of Home Affairs) who in his report,  forcefully brought out  the  necessity  of  organizing  the  security in railways  on  a statutory basis.  The Railway Board  also  appointed  a  Security  Adviser  to the Railway Board in July, 1953 to work out the  details  for  the  reorganization  of  the  Security department.  It was decided in consultation  with  the  Ministry  of  Home  Affairs  that  there  should be an integrated well organized force on the model of the Police with adequate supervisory staff specially trained to  meet  the  peculiar  aspects of crime that were  prevalent  in  Railways  and  act  as  a  second  line  to  the  States  Police  with  whom,  under  the Constitution,  policing  on  Railways was rested.  This led to introduction of the R.P.F.  Bill in the Parliament of India for the better protection and security of Railway property and the same was passed as The Railway Protection Force Act, 1957 (No.23 of 1957).

Gradually and steadily the force has evolved in many aspects from then onwards and there after The RPF Act, 1957 was modified by Parliament for the first time in 1985 vide Act No.60 for the constitution and maintenance of the Force as an Armed Force of the Union and for the second time  in 2003 with Railway Act vide which the additional responsibilities of Passenger Safety and Security of their belongings were laid on the shoulder of the Force by extending the powers of execution of 29 sections of Railway Act. At present the Force is escorting maximum number of mail/express trains throughout the length and breadth of the nation beside the access control duties at important stations.

Source : Central Railway / Indian Railways Portal CMS Team Last Reviewed : 09-11-2023  

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