Every evening, Manish Pradhan plays squash at Integral Coach Factory’s officers club in Chennai. After a day of hard work at the railway workshop, the 50-year-old engineer finds the game a stressbuster and often out-manoeuvers opponents. But till recently, he faced a challenger.
Playing with Sudhanshu Mani, the factory’s former boss, was always difficult even though he was 10 years older, Pradhan recalls. In the court, as they alternately tackled the ball, Mani would ask Pradhan about the progress made during the day in the Train 18 project, the semi-high speed world-class train set being designed by a team of 300 people.
Then the matches stopped. Mani retired on December 31 last year, packed his luggage and left for Lucknow — his hometown — the very next day.
Rebuilding Brand ICF
Integral Coach Factory, spread over 473 acres in the seaside city, was set up eight years after Independence and has rolled out more than 60,000 rail coaches. But of late, the coaches were not considered modern enough for the elite Rajdhani or Shatabdi trains. So from last year, ICF stopped producing those “outdated” coaches — also known as ICF coaches — and started manufacturing only the state-of-the-art Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches that are part of Rajdhani and Shatabdi. Read more
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