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Rail museum to be expanded

R.K. Kulshrestha, General Manger, Southern Railway, looking at the steam locomotive on display at the rail museum in Tiruchi on Wednesday.M. Srinath

The Railway Board has sanctioned Rs. 2.50 crore for digitisation of heritage items and rare documents exhibited at the rail museum here.

Southern Railway General Manager R.K.Kulshrestha told reporters here on Wednesday that the rail museum was the second best in the country. “We want to expand and bring more heritage items to be exhibited here so as to make it more attractive one,” he said after inspecting the exhibits at the museum and offering suggestions for improvement to officials.

He said that the ministry has directed that all heritage items in the railways should be preserved. “We have a lot of heritage items and records. We have a more than 100-years-old complaints book,” he said. The digitisation project would help strengthen the conservation efforts and the work would start soon.

He said he had suggested introduction of a sound and light programme and food plazas. “Only a few people are visiting it now; we want to attract more people especially school children. Schools can be offered packages so that students can learn about railways,” he said.

The Rail Museum, opened in February 2015, is located on a five-acre campus close to the Tiruchi Railway Junction. It showcases the heritage of the railways especially the then South Indian Railway with headquarters as Tiruchi. Several heritage items including clocks, signal lamps, rare photographs and documents are on display. A Swiss-made steam loco, vintage fire engine and a narrow gauge diesel locomotive are among the significant exhibits at the museum.

He said the Union Cabinet had decided to electrify all rail routes in the country. All sections, except heritage ones such as the Nilgiri Mountain Railway would be electrified in due course.

On the demand for operation of another night train to Bengaluru from Tiruchi, he said that there was a capacity constraint at Bengaluru. “We will try to convince them and see whether the train could be operated,” he said. On outsourcing in railways, he said they had to take recourse to outsourcing in certain areas to bring down operational costs and focus on core operations.

Mr.Kulshrestha inspected the newly installed plastic bottles shredder machine at the Railway Junction. The shredder has been donated by Southern Railway Women’s Welfare Organisation,Tiruchi Division. Mansi Kulshrestha, president, Southern Railway Women’s Welfare Organisation, members of the organisation from Tiruchi Division, Uday Kumar Reddy, Divisional Railway Manager, were present. Later, he visited the Railway Hospital at Golden Rock and inaugurated the 31st All India Railway Chess Championship at the Multi-Disciplinary Zonal Training Institute in the city.


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