Women take charge of goods train on Western Railway
Aakanksha Ray piloted the train as the Goods Guard. She was joined by Kumkum Nagendra, who served as the Loco Pilot and Udita Verma as the Assistant Loco Pilot of the train.
January 06, 2021 / 01:30 PM IST
For the first time in the history of Western Railway’s Mumbai division, three women – loco pilot, assistant loco pilot and a guard – took charge of a goods train and piloted it from Vasai Road to Vadodara on January 5.
“A freight train was run with all Women Crew i.e. lady Loco Pilot, Astt Loco Pilot & Guard from Vasai Road to Vadodara on WR on 5th January, 2021,” tweeted Western Railway (WR) on January 6.
Aakanksha Ray, an MBA graduate from Indore, piloted the train as the Goods Guard. She was joined by Kumkum Nagendra, who served as the Loco Pilot and Udita Verma as the Assistant Loco Pilot of the train, reported Mumbai Mirror.
According to the report, Ray joined as goods guard in the Mumbai central division of WR on April 4, 2019. The job of a good guard needs a lot of effort as the person-in-charge has to stay in their brake van during the entire run where no basic facilities are given, the report suggested.
The situation, however, has slightly improved now with the running of 8 wheeler brake van, said the report citing Napoleon Fernandez, a former Guard who served for the Indian Railways between 1959 to 1993.
In the job of Goods Guard, one has to spend long hours in utmost vigilance and it can be very taxing mentally as well as physically, Fernandez told the publication.
By taking up the job of Goods Guard, Ray believes that this will further challenge the notion that certain professional tasks can only be done by men. Also, doing this job fills her with pride to “serve the people of our nation,” she added.