Indian Railways under Suresh Prabhu has in the past two years come up with interesting and sometimes innovative ways of spreading and enhancing awareness about social schemes and campaigns. The latest is a drive at the Varanasi railway station to make people aware of Modi government’s various schemes. Incidentally, Varanasi is PM Narendra Modi’s Lok Sabha constituency. While most would assume that the awareness drive would involve putting up posters – this is where the Indian Railways has become innovative!
Instead of putting up hoardings and posters, Indian Railways has painted messages on each step. Sample this: the message on one step reads – Swachh Bharat milkar badle desh ki surat (Clean India – let’s work together to change the face of India). Another reads: Har gao tak bijli pahuchane ki sarkar ne thani (Government has resolved to provide electricity in every village). Other messages talk of the Indradhanush yojana, beti bachao-beti padhao, DBT, LPG schemes, PM fasal bima yojana etc. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu tweeted images of the initiative in a witty way. “Mind your step,as u can come across some useful info!Pics from stn @ Varanasi.Educating people,Govt schemes under @narendramodi’s leadership,” Prabhu said.
— Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) October 25, 2016
Recently, the Howrah division of Eastern Railway modified popular Indian film dialogues to effectively tell people to stop dirtying stations. As a part of the ‘Swachhta Saptah’ initiative of the Railways, the Howrah division put up posters at stations, highlighting the importance of cleanliness, and the penalty associated with littering and spitting. From “Ja Simran Ja, Platform bhi saaf rakhte hue ja” to “babumoshai, kab kaun, kahaan kuda giraayega…yeh koi nahi bata sakta”, these posters generated a lot of buzz on social media. Most peoplenot only appreciated the humour but also the step by Eastern Railway to spread awareness.
In the last few months, many railway stations across the country have got makeovers, with government organisations, students, NGOs volunteering to paint station walls with beautiful, traditional or abstract, art. But, this latest move to paint steps to send a message about the government’s schemes is certainly eye-catching!