News: Braille Indicators Make Borivali Station Accessible For The Blind
From changing platforms and delayed trains to dodging crowds every day, we’re aware of the many problems Mumbai’s commuters face. These issues are magnified when you’re a disabled traveller commuting across the city on the Mumbai local. But September 2018 brings with it some good news for visually impaired travellers. On World Tourism Day, Cox & Kings Foundation and Anuprayas, the organisation behind India’s first blind-friendly station, joined hands to make Borivali railway station an accessible premise.
The Borivali railway station in Mumbai was strategically selected since it is used by outstation passengers as well as in-city commuters. To make the station more accessible and travel easier for the vision-impaired, Braille signs were embossed on the railings, entry and exit points. Commuters also have access to Braille booklets, available at ticket counters, which helps them locate various amenities and has the main emergency numbers.
These strings of development were based on the results of a survey conducted to understand the needs and issues faced by vision-impaired passengers in Mumbai. The results showed that the time taken to identify the platform often led to passengers missing their trains. Many were forced to board moving trains, making them prone to fatal accidents. The Braille signs embossed across the station will now help the vision-impaired identify the right platforms.
These latest additions to Borivali staion were introduced on 28th September, 2018, in a ceremony inaugurated by Gopal Shetty, Member of Parliament from Mumbai North; Thomas C. Thottathil, Vice President at Corporate Communications and CSR for Cox & Kings; Karan Anand Head of Relationships at Cox & Kings; and Pancham Cajla, Founder and CEO at Anuprayas.
Speaking about this much-awaited project, Karan Anand said, “In order to make travel barrier-free and address the accessibility concerns of people with disabilities, it is integral for the government, businesses and the people to work hand in hand. An inclusive society can only be created by enabling a physical environment that can be accessed seamlessly and equally by all. This project is a step towards creating a travel environment that is easy, dignified and seamless.”
While Pancham Cajla declared Mysore as India’s first accessible station for vision-impaired in 2015, Enable Travel’s wheelchair-user guest writer Virali Modi contributed to the 2018 Divyangjan Project, through the #MyTrainToo campaign, which aims to make facilities available for the disabled people in India. Her efforts resulted in Kerala’s Ernakulam Junction becoming accessible for wheelchair users with permanent wheelchair ramps. Additionally, luggage porters have also been trained on how to assist disabled passengers at the station. While we already have handicapped compartments in trains, Kerala’s next goal is to have wheelchair-friendly AC lounges and wheelchair-friendly washrooms.
Pancham Cajla aims to make many stations, schools and trains accessible for the vision-impaired. While inaugurating Mumbai’s Borivali Braille project, he said, “For me, it is nothing less than a dream to make travel more accessible for the vision-impaired fraternity in Mumbai. Our Braille-embossed platform indicators are tamper-free with the best durability. Also, the Braille booklets have been designed post a thorough survey and integrate information about the most common problems faced by the commuters.”
Enable Travel is proud to announce the Borivali Braille Project launched on 2018 World Tourism Day, taking India one step closer to inclusive travel. We look forward to accommodate the needs of one and all and cumulatively work towards a more inclusive society.
What do you think can be done to make travel for the disabled easier? Leave us a line below to share your thoughts on accessible travel in India.
Visit Enable Travel for more information on accessible holidays
You can write to us on firstname.lastname@example.org