Pune: The Pune Railway Division introduced a portable wheelchair ramp at Pune railway station on Saturday which will facilitate entry of physically challenged people and debilitated senior citizens on to trains.
The ramp will be placed on the edge of the platform and the door of the coach, bridging the gap, enabling seamless entry of the wheelchair.
“The ramp has been kept with the station director’s office and those in the need can contact the office and get it. The ramp will enable wheelchair-bound passengers to approach their seats without getting down from the wheelchair,” said Manoj Jhanvar, Public Relations Officer, Pune Division.
Previously, persons with disabilities (PWD) faced difficulties while boarding trains. They had to dangerously crawl into the coaches or take help of other passengers to reach their berths. Now, they can get into the coaches with the help of the ramp. The station has wheelchairs for PWDs. They can avail the service for free after showing any of their identity cards. The beneficiaries will have to inform the wheelchair section, which is kept with the station director’s office on platform 1.
On the first day, the makeshift ramp was used for Pune-Jammu Tavi Jhelum Express. One of the physically disabled persons took the benefit of the service. “I have been travelling in trains regularly for so many years, but for the first time, I saw such a mobile ramp for trains. It’s a welcoming step by railways. Several people like me will benefit from it,” said the passenger.
Suresh Prabhu announced this facility in August 2015. Instructions were given to start this facility at all ‘A1’, ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ category railway stations. The facility will be available in all mail and express trains, including Garib Rath train.