The railway ministry has asked railway zones to provide more security to special trains that are run as a tribute to philosophers, leaders and scholars across the country.
The issue came to the fore after the Vivekananda Express reached the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus station on August 12. The train, which set out in January across the country on the occasion of the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, has been defaced both inside and outside. The train has special exhibits such as photographs and articles on the life and philosophy of Vivekananda.
Sources said the railway ministry came down strongly on the issue and its heritage wing demanded prevention of such incidents. “It is a sad that people are damaging the train. We are taking steps to prevent such vandalism,” said Manu Goel, executive director (heritage), railway board. He, however, refused to elaborate on the steps that would be taken.
The Vivekananda Express, which has five air-conditioned coaches, left from CST on August 14. Officials from the Central Railway said they had placed RPF personnel to man the train.
Similarly, people had scribbled inside the Sanskriti Express that was run to commemorate 150th birth anniversary of Nobel laureate Guru Rabindranath Tagore.