Can I pull the train chain if my phone falls off the running train?

Stopping a running train is much more a complex process than you think. It should only be done if there’s an emergency, and you dropping your phone doesn’t qualify to be an emergency, but as carelessness!

If you pull the chain for such a silly reason, the railway police has the right to book you under Section 141 of the Railways Act, and a fine of Rs 1,000 or/and imprisonment up to a month can be imposed. But offenders are usually asked to pay a fine of Rs 500.

Once someone pulls the alarm chain, the train stops and pressure is built to restart it. It takes 15 to 20 minutes for the train to move again as the assistant loco pilot or guard needs to come to the specific compartment and reset the valve, which is opened when the chain is pulled. This can indirectly affect the schedule of all the trains, cause hundreds of thousands of rupees loss to the Indian Railways and trust me, even your newest iPhone X is not worth it!

As per The Indian Rlys Act 1989 CHAPTER-XV Penalties and Offences

141. Needlessly interfering with means of communication in a train

If any passenger or any other person, without reasonable and sufficient cause, makes use of, or interferes with, any means provided by a railway administration in a train for communication between passengers and the railway servant in charge of the train he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both:

Provided that , in the absence of special and adequate reasons to the contrary to be mentioned in the judgment of the court, where a passenger, without reasonable and sufficient cause, makes use of the alarm chain provided by a railway administration, such punishment shall not be less than —

a fine of five hundred rupees, in the case of conviction for the first offence; and
Imprisonment for three months in case of conviction for the second or subsequent offence.

So what can you do in such cases?

  • Note down the nearest Over Head Electrical pole (OHE pole) number and any nearest landmark. This can then be reported to the railway police through an official complaint. The chances that you’ll get back your lost phone is slim though.
  • You yourself can try to reach the corresponding place (if you note the OHE pole number) and search. If it’s a remote deserted place, chances are, you’ll find it.
  • Block your old sim, buy a new phone and keep quiet. At least you’ll not be ridiculed for your carelessness.

What constitutes an emergency is not defined , but this definitely is not an emergency, you deserve to buy another mobile phone.