Opting for Railways was a matter of pride for P.N. Rai who set a record by completing works much ahead of the schedule, says JAYARAJ MAMEPALLI.
Little did the young engineer from Banaras know that at some point in life he would play a key role in electrification of the major railway routes of South Central Railway- from Vijayawada to Visakhapatnam and Kazipet to Sanathnagar, in Andhra Pradesh. The projects were executed in a record time with such precision that despite many hurdles, the take-off was smooth. Cool-headed, open to new ideas and gifted with an infectious smile- these qualities best describe Guntur Division's Additional Divisional Railway Manager, Prabhu Narayan Rai. An electrical engineer (control systems) from the Banaras Hindu University, he chose to serve the Railways as he thought the job was 'challenging' and provided ample scope to experiment with new ideas.
Unwinding in the cosy environs of Hotel Vajrams Residency in Guntur, Mr. Rai shared with Metro Plus his ideas on why it was a matter of pride to be associated with something `Indian' rather than yearning for dollars abroad. The additional DRM, his better half Indu and their only son Ashish, who is a student of Information and Communication Technology, make an ideal family. Prabhu Rai served in the Central Organization for Railway Electrification (CORE) at Allahabad, where he was closer to his siblings who are settled there. Recounting his stints at Kazipet and Guntakal, he says apart from learning to face challenges at work he had taken a liking for south Indian delicacies like Idli-sambar. A die-hard north Indian food lover, chole bhature and roti-sabji are his favourites. He finds people in Guntur disciplined and friendly. "My 4-year stint at electric loco shed in Lallaguda was the most memorable in my career. It was more satisfying than the job of an additional DRM. The passion with which we worked to increase productivity, a dedicated and disciplined work force, the industrial environment- all these factors contributed to a sense of satisfaction," says Rai.
The couple shares the hobby of book reading, but Rai is also passionate about gardening. Indu reads all types of novels or magazines. She loves trying new recipes at home but whenever time allows, the family grabs the opportunity of dining out. Watering the plants and maintaining their small garden well is a morning ritual for the couple. Both Rai and Indu miss Ashish, as he is studying at Ahmedabad. Watching latest movies together is their style of spending leisure time. Indu has a clear tilt towards religion and her day is not complete without performing the daily pooja. Rai begins his day by playing badminton or going out for a jog while son Ashish is a good cricket and badminton player at the university-level. "I am lucky to have such parents with an open mind. They have given me full freedom to choose my career. My dad never gets angry while my mom never pressurizes me to do anything," says Ashish happily. "When you start liking a person there are no disputes. Even if there are any, they begin to appear insignificant as you learn to appreciate the person more and more," Rai says revealing: "That's the secret of my happy family."