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1-min read

Train To Malgudi: You Can Now Visit RK Narayan's Fictional Railway Station in Real Life

Remember the small fictional town of Malgudi from RK Narayan's stories? You can now visit its railway station in real life.

Raka Mukherjee | News18.com@RakaMukherjeee

Updated:March 5, 2019, 8:29 AM IST
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Train To Malgudi: You Can Now Visit RK Narayan's Fictional Railway Station in Real Life
Remember the small fictional town of Malgudi from RK Narayan's stories? You can now visit its railway station in real life.
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If you are an Indian kid who grew up in the 90's, there is a major chance you would have read about Swami and his friends, set in the fictional South Indian town of Malgudi.

What author R.K. Narayan created in 'Malgudi Days' may have been just a fictional place, with no proper geo-tagged location, but the place had a magical real-ness to it.

When you read about Swaminathan or Swami, or Thannappa, you believed that they existed in a city, which was set in a very similar setting to every other small Indian town you knew.

When Narayan described the train pulling into Malgudi, bringing with it a new set of characters, you looked forward to getting off the train with them and meeting the people on the platform.

And now, this may be a reality.

While 'Malgudi' in itself continues to remain fictional, a railway station in Karnataka is set to become 'Malgudi' soon.

Arasalu railway station, which is 34km from Shivamogga town and is located in Hosanagar taluk, in Karnataka has got the go-ahead from the government to be renamed 'Malgudi.'

But Arasalu isn't just any random train station. It has special significance. This is where director-actor Shankar Nag filmed Malgudi Days movies after the famed television series.

'Malgudi Days' itself is based on the collection of short stories by R.K. Narayan, and the fictional universe is spread across books like, 'A Tiger for Malgudi' and 'Swami and Friends.'

Along with just being renamed, Arasalu railway station will also have a restoration project, with the South Western Railway investing an estimated cost of Rs 1.3 crore into its development.

The old railway station building where the film was shot is in a state of ruination. Plans of turning it into a railway museum are also underway.

This is where the station set to be renamed is located.

image

Master Manjunath, who played the role of Swami, told Times of India that renaming the station after the series is a welcome development.

"Arasalu railway station was perfectly suited to recreate British-era scenes. The first shot was taken on the right platform. When the train returned after 20 minutes, the second shot was done in the opposite platform," he added.

Currently, five trains pass through the station, and only one makes the halt.

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