June 22, 2015

Miles and Miles of Railway Romance...


THERE'S GOOD NEWS FOR all of us, boys. I am pleased to announce yet another star attraction of the steam railway show here in India. Sorry, it is not a loco, but a book, and a lovely one too, called “Indian Railways—More Miles... More Smiles...” The author, Shri J L Singh is one of those rare railwaymen who are steamed up with enough enthusiasm for the railway itself, and the result is here for us to see in the form of a book brought out by the gentleman. And what is more, Singh is also planning to start a railway magazine, so if there’s anyone out there who's starved of railroad romance, he had better be on the lookout for this magazine.

Shri Singh is a member of the Indian Steam Railway Society, which certifies that he is a member of our own gang. And now let us hear the story from the author himself:

“Last year, I had brought out a coffee table book for the Indian Railways called ‘Indian Railways - More Miles...More Smiles’. The railways are not good at marketing, so the book is not very well known.  The success of the book is prompting me to start a magazine for Rail enthusiasts. As of now, I am thinking of a Quarterly magazine.  I am now at a stage where I am preparing a Memorandum of Association for registering a Society that will own and publish the magazine.  I hope to have the magazine's first issue out by the end of October.

“Like the President of our Society, Shri L K Sinha, and Secretary, Shri G Shanker,  I am an alumni from Jamalpur.  For the record, Shri Sinha is a Special Class Railway Apprentice from the 1957 batch, Shri  Shanker is 1959 batch, while I am from the 1965 batch.  I resigned from the Railways in 1993 and joined RITES from where I resigned in 2005.  I would normally have retired in 2006.

“After retirement, I worked for some time (4 years of this was in Mali but on a non-railway job) and now I am indulging in my hobbies. These are railway history and heritage on the one hand and bird watching on the other.  I am interested to convert both into writing.  One of the outputs of the last was the coffee table book that I had referred to.  It is called Indian Railways - More Miles...More Smiles and I had compiled, designed, edited and brought it out on behalf of the Indian Railways.  It is available on sale at the National Rail Museum in Delhi.

“The book is a collections of articles and more important, photographs, that bring out more than anything else, the role of the rail enthusiast. Most of the articles in this book and particularly the photographs, I got from rail enthusiasts. Even the railwaymen who have contributed have done so as rail enthusiasts.  It is the success of this book that has encouraged me to go ahead with a rail enthusiast magazine.”
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So what does the book hold for store for us within its covers? Here’s a list of contents telling us what we may expect within this well made treatise...


 C o n t e n t s

Manning the Indian Railways
The Hidden Face of the Railway Enthusiast
A Rich Architectural Heritage
Branch-line Profit and Poetry 
Development of Indian Steam Locomotives – A Philatelic Journey
Trains in Motions – Photo Feature
First Ladies
Indian Railways and Society
Bridging the Indian Railways – Marvels of Engineering
Rail Modelling
Sporting Traditions
India’s only Rack Railway
Romancing the Bhore Ghat
Railways and 1971 War
Railway Colonies
Railway Women’s Welfare Central Organisation
Railway Public Sector Units
RITES Ltd.
Ircon International Ltd.
Container Corporation of India Ltd.
Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd.