Rekha Mishra, a sub-inspector from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus has been in the news for the past couple of weeks. She has achieved an astounding feat of rescuing 434 children in one year. Out of the 1150 children that Railway Protection Force has rescued, she single-handedly has the credit of saving 434 children to her name.
Rekha Mishra had joined the Force in 2014 and had an excellent track record of going out of her way to help women and children in need. When The Logical Indian spoke to her, she said, “Children, women and elderly always had a special place in my heart. Born in an army family, I had been brought up to help them always, even if it demands me to go out of my way.” Rekha hails from Allahabad and maintains a very humble outlook. What makes her achievement even more remarkable is the fact that she joined the forces just two years ago. Rekha recalled a case where three girls from Chennai were kidnapped, and they managed to escape their captors only to board a long-distance train. They had boarded off at Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. They were rescued and handed over to their parents after contacting the local police station. Though the railway board has a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for such cases, it is her personal touch which makes this achievement even more recognisable.
“Most of the children run away on being beaten by parents or to meet their Facebook friends or even to meet their favourite film stars or even attracted by the glamour of Mumbai,” says Rekha. “I also make sure they don’t fall into wrong hands unless they are returned to their parents,” Rekha said. When asked how does she figure out which kids need to be rescued she said that most children who run away from their homes, end up at the last station of the trains they board. Rekha also added that children, young men and women who look vulnerable are often in need of help. She also gives them the needed protection so that they feel safe. Mishra often works for twelve-hour shifts a day, and her seniors also impressed with her dedication. Apart from rescuing, she also effectively follows up on the case.
Rekha says, “Most of the children whom we rescue are from UP or Bihar. They are mostly among the age group of thirteen to sixteen.” She keeps an eye on people who are lost, scared and can’t make their way out amidst a crowd. Ms Singh works with ASI Shivram Singh, and they are trained specially to follow a lengthy procedure for the best of the children. After spotting a child, she embarks on a detailed enquiry about the child. She questions her/him thoroughly to find out where the child belongs from and other information. Later the local police station and co-ordinates to inform the parents of the kid. They are sent to Children Welfare Committee where the children, as well as their parents, are counselled. “It’s an honour to don the uniform. The look of relief in the eyes of the parents and the thankful tone of their voice is what keeps me going,” Rekha said, on asking what keeps her motivated.
The Logical Indian requests all the readers to keep an eye for lost or scared vulnerable children looking for help at the railway stations. The readers are requested to call the child-helpline number 1098 or to hand them over the Railway Protection Officials at the station. Handing over to the RPF shall certainly help the kid from falling into wrong hands.