The 55-year-old has been desperately looking for treatment for his grandson's cleft-lip and the specially converted sky-blue, seven-coach train was the answer to his prayers.
"We had been waiting for the surgery ever since the child was born 18 months ago," said Prajapat as his grandson was wheeled into the operating theatre onboard the hospital-train.
The train criss-crosses the country, providing state-of-the-art medical care to those who would otherwise have to travel hundreds of miles to the nearest major hospital.
It spends about a month in a district before moving on to a new destination, filling a critical gap in the country's public health system.
"We were thinking we would have to travel everywhere and spend a lot of money. But it's god's blessing that this hospital came to us," said Prajapat.
"I was worried how they are going to conduct the operation in a train. But when we came here and saw the facilities, there was no doubt."
Government-run community health centres form the backbone of rural healthcare in the country. But a lack of infrastructure and doctors means 70 percent of the country's 1.25 billion people have no easy access to treatment.
State-run hospitals are often stretched to breaking point and patients face long delays for even minor treatment and are forced to share beds.
So many people flock to private clinics even though a consultation can cost Rs1,000 ($15), a huge sum for millions living on less than $2 a day.
Train takes the strain
The Lifeline Express took to the rails in 1991 to help patients in far-flung areas who need surgery for cataracts, polio and cleft palates.
In 2016, the train expanded its services to include screening and surgery for oral, breast and cervical cancer.
It has two operating theatres and about 20 staff. Many of the doctors work for free.
"I was traumatised to see the healthcare system, especially for women, that we have in the country," said Sikka.
"Women were contracting infections only because they were delivering kids outside hospitals."
Sikka said the Lifeline Express did not just aim to treat and leave, but to educate local doctors and people about the right approach to healthcare.
"We also try to set the example that this is how an operating theatre should look. We make sure a local doctor is there when the surgery is being conducted so that he can do the follow-ups later on."
Since its launch, more than 130,000 operations have been carried out at 191 stops across the country, said Anil Darse, deputy project director of the hospital-train.
"It's a unique concept of taking healthcare to the public," he said.
The expected launch of another train this year will help more people like Prajapat.
"It's beautiful reaching out to those who really need you," said Sikka. "We need more such trains. Hopefully we will have one more this year."
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