Memories

The places where moments reside

When I did a Aamir Khan in Ghulam in real life





2 years back you all must have read about my ordeal with the Indian Railways where I had to abandon my train midway after being forced by the TT and the nightmare that had followed. Now yesterday another thing happened with me which reminded me of Aamir Khan`s train stunt from the movie Ghulam. 

The route this time also was the same- Kanpur to Lucknow. The train halted at a signal which was just 8 km away from Lucknow station. The stop can be routine from 5 to 10 minutes but yesterday it was 50 minutes and when a few passengers were actually thinking of getting down and walking along the tracks to the station, the train started. The train stopped next just 900 m from the station. The place where it stopped now is the washing line of Northern Railway. On the left side you have a washing line which is boundaried with railing and then 2 normal tracks side-by-side but the gap between the two tracks is narrow. You can’t walk in the space between the tracks while the other train is coming from the opposite direction. The air blast coming from the opposite direction train travelling at even 5 km would throw you under either of the rail tracks and you would be 50-50. 

The train stopped and I noticed one incoming train but my train did not move even 10 minutes after it had passed so I decided to get down cross the engine of my train and jump up to the washing line on the left. The left side door of my coach was jammed otherwise I would have got to the washing line from that side only. I was in the sixth or seventh coach from the start. The moment I had crossed the guard coach behind the engine, I again saw an incoming train on the next track. Now there was a lot of things going into my mind and a lot of calculations. Will the train move now? Would it stay halted? Would I be able to cross the engine and not be mowed down? Returning to safety I boarded the guard coach and a policeman who was at the door helped me out as the footsteps in a guard coach are a bit different in length as compared to the passenger coaches. I stayed in that that coach for another 10 minutes before I decided to try the washing line walk once again. 

The issue with the washing line platform elevation was that there was a bend in the track which made it impossible to gauge a safe distance between the two in case I needed to stay there while the train moved. Anything could have happened. The moment I got down 1 person in front of me had a talk with the engine driver who was also cursing railways for having made the whole train wait for so long without covering any substantial distance. Just 50 m ahead I decided to cross the track to the left side (a safe buffer distance in case the train decided to move and I did not want it to become a 50-50). Just then the train horned on and we all scampered back to the guard coach while waving my hands to the train driver with whom we had just had a talk telling him to just hold on a bit. Now the problem with my train was that there were two engines so you can understand the situation when we have to cover an extra engines length. 

Just 3 weeks back I have had an terrible accident in which my hips got injured and there is still a bit of pain as the leg has not recovered to its 100% power. So in a slow about to move train I was trying to get in the coach with even the lowest footstep quite a high then what my leg would allow me to stretch (consider also the fact that I was wearing jeans which had become drenched in the 45+ temperature sweat, so it was a sticky jeans with not much flexibility and movement). Only I knew that how I could climb up and I also pulled up one guy by hand. The train took another 15 minutes to come to a complete halt at the station. In the two train instances every time I felt like it was my last day on planet Earth and I’ll be just another casualty who would be mowed down by the train but I barely made it. Frustrating was the whole scenario where a train which reaches Lucknow in 90 minutes at 5.30 in the evening was standing 8 km away and then also it took 90 minutes to cover 8 km. That’s the condition of Indian Railways. The double whammy came later on when I decided to check ola which was showing me a fare of Rs. 450 for a 12 km distance to my home. Tired and shaken up by all this I decided to walk another 300 m to the metro station which would bring me really close to my home at a fraction of a cost. After catching an ola auto for 65 from the metro station I reached home at 8. 

So this is my instance of feeling just like Aamir Khan from Ghulam where you have to consider that the whole scene with the train was fake and real life is so much scary when it comes to trains and a lot of things you have to consider before you hitch a ride on the railway tracks. 

The only thing I hated that time was my injury which restricted my movement quite a big extent.

The previous instance is here:

When I did a Aamir Khan in Ghulam in real life When I did a Aamir Khan in Ghulam in real life Reviewed by Shwetabh on 3:19:00 PM Rating: 5

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