Reethu, a story teller, a person often found between the pages of a book or contemplating the nuances of life.
Indian Railways ran a special seven-coach toy train on the Shimla-Kalka heritage line on Sunday, September 7, to bring just two passengers - an NDA exam candidate and his father - to Shimla, Himachal Pradesh.
According to a report by The Indian Express, Anurag Sharma and his father boarded the toy train at Solan at 4.30 am and arrived in Shimla, around 45 km away, at 7.10 am. Sharma was appearing for the National Defence Academy and Naval Academy Examination (I) and (II), conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
While the services on the Shimla-Kalka rail line were suspended in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the special train was run on instructions from the Centre to help the candidates.
"This special train has been started amid of COVID-19 pandemic to provide transportation to the candidates appearing in the National Defense Academy (NDA) examination of India which are being conducted by the Union Public Service Commission Examination across India," Chief Commercial Inspector A S Thakur told ANI.
While it takes 1.5 to 2 hours to travel between the two towns by road, the train takes longer due to difficulty of the terrain.
"There were no other passengers on the train, presumably because it takes less time to travel from Solan to Shimla in a bus or a car," the official said.
The train ran with seven coaches and the down train to Solan left Shimla at 6.30 pm and had no passengers, said Thakur.
On Friday, Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal said that Central Railways of the Indian Railways will run 23 special trains for the convenience of candidates appearing for NDA and Naval Academy exams. While the NDA exams were scheduled to be held from April 19, it was postponed due to the pandemic.
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