Indian Railways has been actively pursuing to provide world-class amenities to its passengers. In what is believed to be a historic move, the differently-abled passengers, whom Prime Minister Narendra Modi refer to as ‘Divyangs’ will not face any problem in getting a lower berth in Third AC coaches. The Indian Railways has fixed quota for ‘Divyangs’ in 3AC of mail and express trains to make their journey hassle-free.
The decision by the Indian Railways is believed to come close on the heels of an incident in which a wheelchair-bound athlete faced difficulty in securing a lower berth. It was reported that Subarna Raj, the medal winning para-athlete was alloted an upper berth and could not avail a lower berth in the Nagpur- Nizamuddin Garib Rath express and had to sleep on the floor of the train. Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu had ordered an inquiry into the incident and instructed corrective measures so that such an incident is not repeated in future.
It has to be noted that at present, there is a provision for lower berth quota in sleeper class only. A senior Railway Ministry official was quoted by PTI saying that a lower berth in 3AC coach will be reserved for ‘Divyangs’ in trains and the necessary software is being readied for this process. Reports inform that the Ministry of Railways will announce the 3AC quota facility for ‘Divyangs’ this week.
The Indian Railways has been making constant efforts to provide all the required facilities to divyangs. For differently-abled passengers, Railways have also facilitated smooth entry into platforms; all stations are being made accessible for differently-abled passengers. Apart from this, waiting halls have Divyang-friendly toilets and many coaches have signage system in braille for visually- challenged passengers.
Source Link – India