Bengaluru station gets railways' first movable freshwater tunnel aquarium

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New Delhi, Jul 1 (PTI) With an aim to provide a memorable experience to passengers and make their waiting time at the station pleasurable, the Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation Limited (IRSDC) has opened the railways' first movable freshwater tunnel aquarium at the KSR Bengaluru station from Thursday.

In a statement, the IRSDC said this one-of-its-kind aquatic park was developed in collaboration with the HNi Aquatic Kingdom. It is based on the Amazon river concept and promises to be a visual treat.

'In addition to enhancing the passenger experience, the initiative would be a revenue earner for the Indian Railways. A nominal entry fee of Rs 25 has been kept per passenger. This was opened for the public on Thursday.

'It is our endeavour to transform the Indian Railways by redeveloping stations at par with airports and also enhance passenger delight with our excellent facility management initiatives, wherein even the waiting time will become a pleasurable experience for the passengers and visitors rather than being mundane,' the statement said.

This 12-foot-long Aquatic Kingdom will also be educational as the visitors will experience a lifesize kingdom of fish here.

In view of the strict Covid-related protocols, up to 25 visitors will be allowed inside the aquarium at a time, said S K Lohia, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, IRSDC.

The Aquatic Kingdom will have a 3D 'selfie' area, where a big fish will pop out of the aquarium. With almost 20 feet of glass periphery, it houses planted, marine and tropical sections with varied flora and fauna in pleasing colours. It is also home to various aquatic animals such as the alligator gar ranging from two to three feet, sting rays, eels up to three-and-a-half feet, sharks, lobsters, snails and shrimps. The aquarium is adorned with natural rocks and splashes of driftwood, artificial coral rocks.

The IRSDC has been entrusted with the mandate to undertake facility management at five railway stations -- KSR Bengaluru, Pune, Anand Vihar, Chandigarh and Secunderabad -- to enhance customer satisfaction and make travel a safe and hassle-free experience.

The IRSDC has many firsts to its credit in facility management at railway stations, including installing 'water-from-air' water-vending machines, Fit India squat kiosks, Eat Right stations with the highest rating, digital locker, generic medicine shops, mobile-charging kiosks, a retail store by a startup in the Indian Railways and a food truck.

Shortly, the IRSDC will be undertaking the facility management of 90 more stations in a phased manner. PTI ASG RC

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