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First Motorwoman to Man Deccan Queen

yadavHistory will be written when Deccan Queen will roll out of Pune station on Tuesday morning. International Women's Day on March 8, 2011, will mark yet another milestone in the history of the famous Mumbai-Pune train.

This decade-old train would be run by a woman locomotive driver, Surekha Yadav, who is also the first woman locomotive driver of the Indian Railways.

The historic train, which first ran on June 1, 1930, is the favourite of daily commuters travelling between Mumbai-Pune and back. It has found a place of pride in the Limca Book of Records and has received the world class train status. This is also the only train in the country to bag the ISO 9000 certification and have a dining car.

This is the centenary year of International Women's Day and Yadav has created history by becoming the first woman train driver. She joined the Indian Railways in 1990. Surekha, in her forties, made a landmark when she got into the cab of a railway engine as a driver, a typically male-dominated job. She joined as an assistant driver and is now a motorwoman.

Senior operations manager of Pune Railway Division, Ashok Badgul, said the Deccan Queen was run by the Mumbai division crew and it was their decision to put Yadav on duty. "It gives the message of women empowerment," he said.

Source: DNA , 2011-03-08