Passages from India #3: Gandhi’s India

Gandhi once claimed that the only way to really see India was by train. He was referring to the essence of India, the 70% of its people living in more than 550000 villages. This was before Partition and Independence in 1947 and so realistically it was also likely the only feasible way.
Rickshaw to the left of me, motorbike to the right, here I am, tuk-tuk in the middle with you.
Since then, advances in air and road travel provide equitable alternatives as far as getting about goes, but you can’t see much ground detail from a plane and road development has no where near kept pace with the automobile industry. The Black Hole of Calcutta-like potholes are deep enough to reduce the 4-wheel drive, air-conditioned, Japanese jeeps that crawl the Indian highways to rickshaw speeds.
This once again leaves train travel as the one realistic mode of transport for achieving Gandhi’s goal. Not only was Gandhi ahead of his time on humanity and politics, but also a visionary in transport logistics!


Other posts in this series: Passages from India.

About JFDerry

Writer. Darwin, science & more. 4 books: Piospheres, Darwin in Scotland, Serial Killers. Current project is THE DISSENT OF MAN. Born near London, raised near Primrose Hill and in Lincolnshire, and studied at the Universities of Bangor, York and Edinburgh for degrees in Biochemistry, Bioelectronics and Biological Computation, and a PhD in African Ecology. Mainly working in British and African universities, but also in Spain, Brussels, Mongolia and Australia, to date, publication history is mostly in academic journals, on aspects of computational biology, pastoralism and on Charles Darwin and evolution. However, also written for several national newspapers, various governments, several major record labels and independent book publishers. Fiction has appeared at the Edinburgh International Book Festival and poetry is at the Human Genre Project. Lives in Edinburgh, with partner and their two daughters.
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One Response to Passages from India #3: Gandhi’s India

  1. Martyn says:

    But if that is you, where is the driver =:o
    Why of all nations has India embraced the train?

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