Monday, August 02, 2010

This toy train is yet to get the green signal

This toy train is yet to get the green signal

Sharath M. Sharma and Rohith K.
It is in Dr. Rajkumar Children's Park at Hanumanthnagar
‘People have given up the hope of seeing the train chugging along'

The facility can be repaired only after the BBMP budget is presented: councillor




Lying idle:The toy train facility was set up in the park in 2007 at a cost of Rs. 1.75 crore.
Bangalore: Though the Dr. Rajkumar Children's Park at Hanumanthnagar is one of the few parks in the city that can boast a toy train, children in the locality are unable to take a joyride on it even three years after it was inaugurated.

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), which developed the park, is yet to give the green signal to the train.

Children disappointed

The result: a group of disappointed children.

Kishan V., a class seven student, said, “Every evening I come with the hope of riding on the train. But I don't think I will happen anytime soon.”

M. Vijaya Lakshmi, a local resident, said people have given up the hope of seeing the train chugging along.

Another resident, K. Krishnappa, complained that the track had broken and needed immediate repairs. At some places, weeds have grown covering the track.

“We have requested BBMP authorities many times to start the facility, but our appeals have gone in vain. Though many politicians have visited the park, none has taken up the issue,” he said.

The residents claim that the train has been used several times in movies. “Even 15 days ago, the train was functioning when there was a film shooting. Once the shooting ended, the ‘signal suddenly changed to red',” a security guard in the park said.

However, BBMP authorities have denied this.

The park was thrown open to public on November 1, 2007 by the then MLA K. Chandrashekar, who is now Councillor for Hanumanthnagar ward.

Statues

The toy train was started to help children go around the park and catch a glimpse of the statues of prominent personalities installed in the park. Mr. Chandrashekar said he fulfilled his duty by starting the train but maintaining it was not his responsibility.

He said that the facility could be repaired only after the BBMP budget was presented.

“It has been nearly four months since I was elected Councillor. I will look into the issue and direct officials to take action after the budget,” he said.

Cost

According to a source in the BBMP, the park was developed at a cost of over Rs. 10 crore.

The toy train was set up at a cost of Rs. 1.75 crore.

The BBMP invited tenders five times since November 2007 for maintaining the facility, but it met with no response.

Finally, in January this year, the tender was awarded to Trans India. They have to maintain the toy train facility for five years at a cost of Rs. 1 lakh a year.

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