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Actors teach discipline at stations

Waiting for your train at the railway station won’t be boring anymore. Rajat Arora reports.

delhi Updated: Dec 05, 2011 00:15 IST
Rajat Arora
Rajat Arora
Hindustan Times

Waiting for your train at the railway station won’t be boring anymore.

Don’t be amazed if you see artists performing a street play on the railway platform next time you go to board a train. The Delhi division of the Northern Railways has started a unique initiative to make the passengers more aware about security and cleanliness on platforms.

The first nukkad natak was performed at several platforms of New Delhi station on Sunday. “We want to make people more aware about cleanliness and security. And there can’t be a more interesting method of transmitting our message than the age-old nukkad natak,” said Ashwani Lohani, divisional railway manager, Delhi division.

The Delhi division of the Northern Railways aims to bring in a change in the behaviour of passengers towards cleanliness and security through street plays. The nukkad natak performed by professional theatre artists will also inform people about the safety measures to be adopted at railway stations.

The move comes almost a month after a man was crushed to death, while trying to board a moving train at Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station. “There’s a need to inform passengers about safety and rules. Other mediums like TV, radio, Internet and print media are effective, but there is nothing more interesting than nukkad natak,” said a senior railway officer.

The Railways are planning to organise such plays at all three prominent Delhi stations — New Delhi, Old Delhi and Hazrat Nizamuddin.

“In the times of flash mobs performing at railway stations to spread messages, old world mass communication techniques like street play still have the power to attract people. The charm and simplicity of nukkad natak endure viewers. It is an innovative step and will also entertain people waiting for their trains,” said Anshuman Singh, a professional theatre artist.

First Published: Dec 05, 2011 00:12 IST