Indian Railways’ British-era cast iron cash boxes, famous for Kakori incident, to become history soon

By: | Published: September 10, 2018 12:35 PM

From September 15, 2018, onwards, the use of the iconic heavy iron cash boxes, which are painted in orange, in vogue for the past 93 years, will be discontinued in the Lucknow division of Northern Railway.

Once looted by revolutionaries Ram Prasad Bismil, Ashfaq Ullah Khan and their associates in Kakori, the cast iron boxes will be put on display in the rail museum.

Indian Railways getting rid of British-era methods! The cast iron cash boxes that are used by Northern Railway zone of Indian Railways to ferry daily revenue for almost a century are soon set to become history. From September 15, 2018, onwards, the use of the iconic heavy iron cash boxes, which are painted in orange, in vogue for the past 93 years, will be discontinued in the Lucknow division of Northern Railway. Recently, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Lucknow division and the State Bank of India (SBI) for collection by cash van as well as subsequent online transfer to the divisional headquarters, a TOI report stated.

Once looted by revolutionaries Ram Prasad Bismil, Ashfaq Ullah Khan and their associates in Kakori, the cast iron boxes will be put on display in the rail museum. For the government treasury, British officials used to collect daily revenue from various railway stations of then United Provinces following which, the money was dispatched to the divisional office in the heavy, highly secure cash boxes. However, during one such journey on August 9, 1925, when a down train from Saharanpur to Lucknow reached near Kakori railway station from Saharanpur, Bismil, Khan as well as their associates pulled the chain and looted the money which was then used to buy arms and weapons for freedom fighters. The box was carrying Rs 4,600 in a leather bag. The robbery was organised by Hindustan Republican Association.

According to the report, the system of ferrying cash continued even in the era of digital banking. In 2016, it was reported that Indian Railways was planning to change the system to a digital one. As per the agreement, SBI cash vans will pick up the daily cash collection of the local railway stations and then the cash will be transferred online into the account of the division office. From September 15, 2018, the online money transfer will start. Also, all 164 railway stations of Lucknow division will implement the online process of transfer within this month, the report stated.

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