The global coronavirus pandemic has been showing no signs of ending anytime soon and the lockdown seems to drag on for some more days, if not months. People are finding new ways to beat the lockdown blues and companies are trying to swim against the tide.
For 12-year-old Adwaith Krishna, however, the lockdown served him well to develop something he had been thinking of for quite some time – a steam locomotive replica.
A resident of Cherpu in Thrissur, Kerala, Krishna came into the limelight after his creation went viral on social media platforms. A video of him building the steam locomotive model shot by his father was initially shared on Facebook. It soon became viral after union railway minister Piyush Goyal shared it on his official Twitter handle.
Krishna's fascination for steam engines was what prompted him to build the train. "I always wanted to build an old steam engine, but I never had enough time. However, the lockdown time helped me achieve that dream."
As many as 33 sheets of newspaper, 10 sheets of A4-size paper, and glue was all it took for Krishna to build the model. "The steam locomotive model comprises an engine and two compartments on a railway track – using nothing but rolled newspapers glued together, except the base, which is thermocol," says Krishna.
The entire artwork, which took around three days to complete, consists of around 450 rolls of paper. Krishna's father Kizhakoot Manikandan and mother Saritha guided him throughout the development
Manikandan, a sculptor by profession, helped his son with the technicalities of building the replica. Soon after his post went viral, Manikandan received several congratulatory messages for his son, and one of them was from the Railways.
"The publicity manager for the Railways contacted us and the video was forwarded to the Central Railway and the union railway minister. Later, we saw the video posted on their official website and social media platforms," says Manikandan, unable to control his excitement.
"Master Adwaith Krishna, a 12 year old rail enthusiast from Thrissur, Kerala has unleashed his creative streak and has made a captvating train model using newspapers. His near perfection train replica took him just 3 days," the Ministry of Railways tweeted on its official handle along with Krishna's video. It was later posted in Goyal official social media handles as well.
Manikandan, however, says that this is not the first such artwork created by his son. "Previously, Krishna had also created motorbikes and cars out of paper. He also created a unique gift box made of different coloured sheets and cardboard."