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GK SPECIAL TOPIC : TRAINS AS SOCIAL CAMPAIGNS
Friday, 18 July 2014 09:49

 



TRAINS AS SOCIAL CAMPAIGNS

The Indian railways introduced some special trains for bringing about social awareness among the masses.

Some of the trains launched were:

1. SANSKRITI EXPRESS:

Indian Railways is running an exhibition train Sanskriti Express to celebrate Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore‘s 150th birth anniversary and showcase his life and philosophy.

The train flagged off by Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee on May 9, 2011 will touch important stations in various parts of the country before returning to Kolkata on May 8 next year.

Five air-conditioned coaches have been modified at the LILUAH RAILWAY WORKSHOP in Howrah to depict Tagore’s achievements and thoughts.

The first coach, named ‘JIBON SMRITI’, will depict the life of Tagore through photographs, while the second ‘GITANJALI’ will exhibit his poems and songs. ‘JOGAJOG’/'MUKTODHARA’ will exhibit his literature; the fourth ‘CHITRAREKHA’ will depict paintings of Tagore and other eminent artists. The last ‘SMARANIKA’ will exhibit and sell handicrafts and other items from SANTINIKETAN, founded by the poet.

Tagore, who was born in 1861 and died in 1941, is among the most renowned writers in the world who churned out poems, plays, songs, novels and short stories. He was the first Indian to win the Nobel Prize in 1913.

2. MOTHER EXPRESS:

Mother Express’, an exhibition train to commemorate the birth centenary of Mother Teresa, was launched by railway ministry.

The train focuses on the life, work and message of Mother Teresa, would travel all over the country in the six months. The train comprises three air-conditioned coaches, in which photographs, write-ups on the life and message of Mother Teresa have been kept for public viewing. The Missionaries of Charity helped the railways by supplying photographs and various materials.

3. RED RIBBON EXPRESS:

Red Ribbon Express is an AIDS/HIV awareness campaign train by the Indian Railways. The motto of the Red Ribbon Express is “Embarking on the journey of life”

To provide awareness among the people both urban & rural population of the country, the Red Ribbon Express project was developed. The concept of the project was to provide knowledge to the public to fight against the dreadful disease “AIDS”

On-platform and off-site communication activities such as exhibits, street plays and demonstrations were also used. Treatment and counseling services were also made available on the coach.

The projects target audience was broad, including youth groups, women’s groups, student communities, urban slum dwellers and farmers.

In its first phase the train was expected to travel 27,000km, reaching 180 stations and holding programmes in over 50,000 villages. To reach outer districts, buses and bicycles were used.

The Red Ribbon Express, in its second phase, also devoted information to general health, hygiene and communicable diseases such as swine influenza, tuberculosis and reproductive and child health services.

4. Commonwealth Express

The Commonwealth Express Train showcasing achievements by Department of Information Technology (DIT) in the field of ICT and e-Governance was launched on 24th June, 2010 and ended its journey on 14th Oct. 2010.

The Commonwealth Express, the exhibition train on the theme of information technology and sports, ran jointly by DIT, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and Railway Sports Promotion Board (RSPB), Ministry of Railways covering 49 unique halts across the nation.

The IT part was exhibited in 6 coaches by DIT and the sports part was exhibited in 5 coaches by RSPB. DIT exhibited and demonstrated capability in general, the work done in the country in the area of information and communications technology, and the initiatives carried out by the DIT affiliated entities in the fields of e-governance, infrastructure, technology relevant to rural India, language interfacing technology, etc.