My NRI friends insist that 200 Rupees is peanuts for a coolie (porter). I remind them gently that the cost of a ticket for the 451 km journey is only 116! They finally concede, and the economist amongst them concludes – the railways have clearly not kept up with inflation!
It is 7:30 AM at Yesvantpur Junction, a satellite rail terminus in a namesake Bangalore suburb, and we are about to board train #6515 to Mangalore, some 10 hours away, in second class ordinary accommodation! Not long ago, I had fetched my NRI friends from the very posh Taj West End hotel, where they had stayed the night, on arrival from Egypt the previous day!
NRI = Non Resident Indians, and at the risk of inviting the wrath of many a reader, I shall desist from using that term here forth 😉