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Kolkata: A nine-year-old boy and her mother have been injured on being hit by splinters after a bullet got fired from the rifle of a Railway Protection Security Force (RPSF) jawan at Dum Dum Metro station today.

Metro Railway authorities are calling this an accident but police have detained the jawan for questioning. The incident took place around 2 pm today in front of the Dum Dum Metro station ticket counter.

The injured mother-son ~ Sangeeta Basu and Saptarshi Basu were first taken to the RG Kar Medical College and Hospital. Subsequently, the family shifted the boy Saptarshi to a private nursing home on EM Bypass in the city.

According to Metro Railway, RPSF jawan Dinesh Meena was posted at the makeshift bunker made of sandbags next to the Dum Dum Metro ticket counter. Around 2 pm, colleague Bishnu Meena came to relieve him.

Going by RPSF norms, instead of taking away the rifle when a jawan hands over charge to another, only the magazine of the rifle is (where live bullets are stored) is exchanged. Accordingly, Dinesh was removing his magazine when he somehow pressed the trigger and a bullet got fired from the automatic rifle.

Luckily, the rifle was then pointed towards the floor. Hence, the bullet first hit the floor, burst into splinters and got redirected towards the ticket counter.

Sangeeta Basu of Sonarpur in South 24-Parganas was returning from her parents’ house with son Saptarshi. She was buying a Metro ticket when a splinter bushed past her arm; another splinter hit her son in the leg.

The incident at once triggered a panic. Policemen, Metro staff, and other RPSF personnel soon stepped in and rushed them to RG Kar Medical College and Hospital at Belgachhia. Metro authorities claimed that their injuries are not critical but the family later shifted the boy to a nursing home.

Soon after the incident a large posse of police from Sinthee police station rushed and so did senior Metro and RPF officers from Metro Railway headquarters. Jawan Dinesh Meena was handed over to the police for questioning.

At this stage, it is being assumed that the bullets went off accidentally. Although questions are being raised as to why going against norms, the jawan did turn off the safety switch that deters accidental firing.

Metro Railway spokesperson Indrani Banerjee said that apart from the police investigation, the general manager has ordered a high-level probe into the incident and CCTV footage are being scanned to find out how all it happened. “Exemplary action will be taken if the jawan or jawans are found guilty,” she said.

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