Parab to stage highest railway tunnel

The stage for Parab-2012 is being modelled after India’s highest broad-gauge railway tunnel that is in Koraput’s Maliguda village. And around six artisans are diligently working on the 30-ft high and 70-ft wide replica since October 28 for the annual cultural extravaganza to be staged in Koraput from November 16 to 18.

“We expect the replica of Maliguda railway tunnel to be a visual treat. Through it we will try to showcase Koraput’s beauty that leaves one mesmerized while travelling in the district by train,” said chief artisan Kartik Raul, who is a constable with Odisha Police by profession but has been decorating the Parab stage for past few years. “Artificial hills and streams have been constructed beneath the tunnel to give a natural and rustic look to the state,” he added. The Rs 1 lakh replica will also have a train passing through it. “The train, ‘Parab Express’, will have only one compartment besides the engine,” said Raul.

The festival organizers are optimistic that the replica will help promote tourism in the district. “Earlier, the Parab stage was made up of clay and Plaster of Paris and carry pictures of tribal dance and musical instruments. This time we thought of a fresh look to the stage and decided to construct the replica of the tunnel that is a big tourist draw of the district,” said collector (Koraput) Sachin Jadab.