The ongoing efforts of Central Government to popularise Science and Technology in the country, especially among the younger generation, received a major boost on Friday when the third phase of mobile Science Exhibition Train popularly called 'Science Express' was inaugurated at the Gandhinagar Railway Station in Gujarat. This project has been organised by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India with the active support of Indian Railways. Department of Science and Technology (DST), has entrusted Vikran A. Sarabhai Community Science Centre (VASCSC), Ahmedabad with the task of coordinating and managing the 'Science Express' across India. In the current phase, the Science Express will travel to 55 locations, mostly not covered earlier, covering about 18,000 kms in seven month of its journey.
It is covering the entire length and breadth of the country. At each of the locations, it would halt for 3-5 days, during which students and general public would visit the exhibition. The sparkling white fully air conditioned train with 16 coaches was custom made and specially fabricated at Rail Coach Factory Kapurthala. In the first two completed phases of the run, the train was successfully taken to 108 stations of the country. In the third phase, Indian Railways will provide online maintenance and upkeep support during the entire itinerary for a smooth and trouble free run. The exhibition in various cities will be held in the station premises with an active support of local railway administration providing exhibition space, basic amenities and security etc. After flag off of the First phase of this prestigious exhibition train from New Delhi on October 20, 2007 by Prime Minister of India and Chancellor of Germany, it has been showcased in 108 cities across India in two phases. The Exhibition, which created four National records, received overwhelming response at all halts. Over 35 lakh people, mostly students have enjoyed learning about cutting-edge research in science, explained through interesting audio visual exhibits and interactive tools.