Matheran train must be named after founder

Updated: Dec 17, 2018, 08:02 IST | mid-day correspondent | Mumbai

A report in this paper stated that the family feels it will be apt tribute to mark the centenary of his death anniversary on December 18

The Peerbhoy family wants the Central Railway (CR) to name the Matheran toy train as the Peerbhoy Express, after the man who started it way back in 1907, ­Abdul Hussain Peerbhoy.

A report in this paper stated that the family feels it will be apt tribute to mark the centenary of his death anniversary on December 18. They have also appealed to the CR to set up a small museum on their family. In return, the family is ready to hand over 2,300 family archival items to CR. The family claims that requests to meet with the CR manager has not fructified as yet. The Railways meanwhile stated that it was open to meeting the family.

While talks are always welcome and conducive, they must lead to a definitive conclusion. The museum is an interesting concept and if made, should be done with a great deal of thought and care. The museum should be a draw for tourists and a good learning experience for all who yearn to learn about the place, its history and the Peerbhoy legacy to one of Mumbai's favourite hill stations.

It is understandable that the family wants to immortalise its ancestor in this way. We also hope with the renaming there is special attention paid to why the train is breaking down very often. A sense of urgency and expertise must be evident when it comes to the smooth running of this endearing toy train.

The Railways must ensure that the running of this train has no more snags. It would be a moving tribute if it is named after its founder. After all, pieces of infra everywhere have been named after people just because they belong to a particular political party, they have no other contribution to that amenity. Here, then is the founder's family asking for his name to be put to the train. That is surely something to think about and hopefully act on.

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