An Andhra youth who placed harmful objects on railway tracks in order to record videos of them getting smashed by trains was arrested by the Railway Protection Force police on Sunday morning.
The police identified the accused as Kongara Ramireddy, a B Tech graduate hailing from Chellore in Yerpedu mandal of Chittoor district. The videos were recorded in Chittoor district’s Renigunta railway junction limits.
Revealing the facts of the case to the media, RPF Circle Inspector Heera Singh said, “Ramireddy placed several objects like vegetables, fruits, pieces of chicken, toys, crackers, cycle chain, and even a bike and a gas cylinder on the railway tracks near his house. He then recorded videos of them getting smashed by oncoming trains, before editing the videos and uploading them on his YouTube channel. He did this with the intention of gaining more viewership and earning money through ads on his YouTube channel.”
A case has been registered under section 153 (Endangering safety of persons travelling by railway by wilful act or omission) and 143 (trespass of Railways) of the Railways Act, 1989.
According to Heera Singh, inspired by watching other YouTube videos, Ramireddy decided to gain traction for his channel by recording such stunts.
Police said out of 47 videos he has uploaded on his YouTube channel, 43 involve dangerous acts such as putting harmful objects on railways tracks.
The CI said that though they had received a few complaints with regard to such acts on the train tracks, they could not find evidence until they came upon Ramireddy’s videos going viral on social media.
He added, “As the videos went viral on social media, we managed to find evidence. In one of the videos, the accused had placed a bike on the track. We were able to arrest him by using the license plate number of the bike.” However, Ramireddy had removed the bike before any train had approached the track.
The CI further said that such acts are grievous in nature and could have resulted in serious damage to the railways and possibly to passengers, while referring to placing objects like gas cylinder and cycle chain on the tracks.
The accused admitted that he had carried out the dangerous acts and recorded them in order to upload them on YouTube to get views and fame. He claimed that he was inspired by other videos on YouTube and didn’t expect that it would cause any harm.