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Saturday, 21 February 2015

Battery-Operated Car a Boon for the Physically Challenged : KOZHIKODE:

Raghavan Nair, who is in his 80s,  pays a visit to his relatives in Kollam once in every two months. He sometimes finds it difficult to get into the train if he gets reservation in the last or first compartment. On Thursday, he had to take a long walk to the compartment, where he was allowed a seat. But he felt happy when he was offered an easy navigation to the train from the platform, in the battery-operated car launched at the Kozhikode railway station to carry the physically challenged and the aged as well as patients.

“It is good to have such facilities at a railway station,” says Raghavan Nair.

The battery-operated car, introduced for the first time in Palakkad Division, is getting a good response from passengers. As per the figures with the station authorities, an average of 25 passengers avail themselves of the service of the car per day.

“As it is in the initial stage, the passengers are yet to be aware of this facility. We have placed boards offering the service,” says chief commercial inspector P Rajagopal. 

“This is a new step in the journey of the station to world class standards. Being a station with A class facility and a huge flow of passengers, there is an urgent need for such a facility at the station,” he says.

Those in need of the car can contact the chief ticket examiner. The vehicle was purchased by Lulu Gold using its Corporate Social Responsibility fund.

The service, which is available from 6 am to 12 am, now serves passengers only on the first platform. The authorities are taking efforts to provide a car for the fourth platform also, with the financial support of private parties.

Impressed by the response the car has evoked, Rajagopal says, two private agencies have approached them, expressing interest in sponsoring the facility. 

“We are looking for support from corporates to arrange maximum services at the station and for the beautification works,” says Rajagopal.

Source: The New Indian Express, 20th Feb 2015 

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