Don’t cross tracks, urge students
Four years ago Arnesh Ghose, 20, saw a train at a station in Kolkata hit a schoolmate and her mother.mumbai Updated: Dec 18, 2010 02:57 IST
Four years ago Arnesh Ghose, 20, saw a train at a station in Kolkata hit a schoolmate and her mother.
Two years ago, one of his seniors from Wilson College, Avantika Desai, died while crossing the tracks at Malad station.
Last week Ghose’s classmate Annette Londhe, 20, watched, as the train she was travelling on, hit a woman at Bhandup station, and dragged her along. She later saw the woman’s head coming off her body.
Each of these horrifying instances has brought students and ex-students of Wilson College’s Bachelor of Mass Media (BMM) department together to conduct a four-day campaign against crossing of railway tracks. More than one lakh people have died in the past two years while crossing the tracks in the city.
“It was the most shocking thing I have seen in my life,” said Londhe of her experience last week. “Trespassing is such an important issue and there is just not enough awareness among people about the dangers.”
Students conducted the campaign at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus on Thursday and Friday, and will continue their campaign at Churchgate station on Saturday and Sunday. This includes a street play performance, a signature campaign, pamphlet distribution and a display of dummies of dead people alongside graphic images and profiles of people who have died on the tracks.
“Everyone is told about the dangers of crossing tracks, but when you actually see such graphic visuals of dismembered bodies, it has greater impact,” said Ghose.
The BMM department at Wilson College has an annual award in honour of Avantika Desai, for the most promising student from the graduating batch. Desai was listening to her Ipod when an oncoming train hit her on the tracks.
“It is sad how many people have lost their lives while crossing the tracks,” said Dolly Thakore, while inaugurating the signature campaign on Friday. “The railways is doing their best, but we need to do still more.”
The general manager of central railways was also present on the occasion. “We are very happy that these students have taken this initiative,” said VA Malegaonkar, CPRO of the central railways.
“We are also trying our best to dissuade passengers from risking their lives.”