New Delhi: In a first initiative of its kind, Indian Railways is likely to introduce Braille stickers in trains for visually-challenged passengers to facilitate their travel. "We are planning to provide Braille stickers inside the coaches for assisting visually impaired passengers," a senior Railway Ministry official said.
"We are in the process of finalising details of introducing Braille stickers. This is the first time that Indian Railways is exploring such initiative," the official added. The initiative is likely to be announced in the Rail Budget 2013-14, he said.
Braille is a writing system which enables visually challenged and partially sighted people to read and write through touch. Recognising the needs of physically challenged persons, the Railways has also decided to provide special arrangements in all mail and express trains to facilitate their travel.
All mail and express trains with modified coaches, known as SLRD coaches, will have reserved seats for physically-challenged persons.
"Railways is manufacturing coaches with specially designed compartments and toilets for passengers with disabilities. Now second class luggage room coaches are being modified to facilitate boarding of trains by the differently-abled travellers," he said.
All mail and express trains with modified coaches, known as SLRD (second class luggage rake for disabled) coaches, will have reserved seats for physically challenged persons, official said. Doors of SLRD coaches are being widened to facilitate the boarding of passengers using wheel-chairs. Railways had made a commitment to a parliamentary committee to make special provision for facilitating train boarding for physically challenged passengers.
There are total four seats in unreserved category in SLRD coaches and now these have been earmarked exclusively for the physically challenged passengers and their escorts. "Till date approximately 2,300 such coaches have been manufactured and at least one SLRD is provided in almost every mail and express train. Similarly Garib Rath trains have been provided with AC compartment in power cars for differently-abled passengers," he said.