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TOP facts about Indian Railway


Running the Railways

  • The largest employer in the world is the Indian railway system in India, employing over 1.6 million people.

  • 1873: World`s first metre gauge service begins, Delhi to Rewari. 
  • 1849: Great Indian Peninsular Railway (GIPR) incorporated. A `guarantee system` that assured 5 per cent returns to all British railway companies in India established.
  • 1853: Railways begin in India with private funds and government support.
  • 1868: Calcutta and South Eastern (CSER) suffers flood losses, transfers all lines to government in return for capital costs, becoming the first state owned railways.
  • 1882: Almost 75 railway operations, owned by the private sector and princely states and a variety of track gauges. Post of Director General of Railways (DGR) is created in the Central Public Works Dept (CPD) to coordinate the network.
  • 1889: States takes over Nizam Railways.
  • 1900: GIPR taken over by state.
  • 1901: Based on the recommendations of Sir Thomas Robertson Committee, a Railway Board is set up with three members.
  • 1904: More members included in the Board.
  • 1905: Powers and structure of Railway Board are formalised. It is now under Dept of Commerce and Industry with an independent Chairman.
  • 1907: Govt purchases all major lines and re-leases them to pvt operators
  • 1920: Based on Acworth Committee recommendations govt takes over actual management of all railways and separates railway finances from general finances. This practice is followed even today.
  • 1922: Retrenchment Committee under Lord Inchcape recommends drastic cuts in workforce and expenses.
  • 1922: Railway Board reorganised, overriding powers given to Chief Commissioner railways.
  • 1924: Railway finances separated from general govt budget.
  • 1925: First Railway Budget presented.
  • 1925:EIR Co and GIPR, the largest networks, taken over the state.
  • 1937: The post of Minister for Transport and Communication created. The minister was a civil servant and dealt with the Railway Board.
  • 1951: Zonal grouping of Railways begins.
  • Railways’ First 
  • april 16, 1853, 3:35 pm: 21 gun salute launches first passenger train in India, by Great Indian Peninsular Railway from Bori Bunder to Thane -- 400 passengers, 14 carriages, three engines, Sindh, Sultan and Sahib. Journey time: 1 hour 15 minutes. 
  • August 15, 1854: First train in east India, Howrah to Hoogly. 
  • July 1, 1856: First train in south India, Veyasarapdy (Madras) to Wallajah Road (Arcot). 
  • March 6, 1859: First train in north India, Allahabad to Kanpur 
  • 1862: First princely state-owned line, Dabhol to Miyagam in Baroda. Train pulled by oxen. Later became Baroda State Railways. 
  • August 1, 1864: First train arrives in Delhi from Calcutta, ferried on boats across Ganga in Allahabad 1867: First suburban service begins from Virar to Bombay Backbay. 
  • 1873: World`s first metre gauge service begins, Delhi to Rewari.  
  • Half Ticket, Full Service


  • 1862: 2-tier seating started in III classes.
  • 1871-74: Gas lamps introduced in many passenger carriages.
  • 1872: Air-cooling introduced in I class coaches on GIPR lines.
  • 1874: IV class introduced; coaches with no seats.
  • 1888: AH Wheeler and Co introduces Railway Library series publications.
  • 1905: Lavatories provided in all lower class carriages.
  • 1936: Air conditioning introduced in coaches.
  • 1952: Fans and light mandated for passenger coaches.
  • 1956: III class passengers allowed use of dining car.
  • 1967: II class sleeper coaches for long distance trains.
  • 1974: III class abolished.
  • 1986: Computerised reservation started at Delhi.
  • Going Loco 
  • 1893: First railway foundry set up at Jamalpur.
  • 1895: First locomotive built with old parts at Ajmer workshop.
  • 1899: `Lady Curzon`, first locomotive built in India, at Ajmer.
  • January 26, 1950: Chittaranjan Loco Works (CLW) set up. Builds first steam engine, `Deshbandhu`.
  • 1952: TELCO begins productions of YG locos.
  • 1959: First steam loco designed by CLW.
  • 1961: Diesel Loco Works, Varansi established.
  •  What`s in a Name?


  • January 1, 1882: GIPR station opened to public in Bombay.
  • 1887: Station named Victoria Terminus (VT) after Queen Victoria on her jubliee year.
  • May 4, 1996: VT renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.
  • IB, near on South Eastern Railway is the shortest station name.
  • Venkatanarasimharajuvariapeta on Southern Railways is the longest station name.
  • The Darjeeling Railway


  • 1800: The Darjeeling Steam Tramway (DST) begins operations on Siliguri-Darjeeling section.
  • 1881: DST becomes Darjeeling Himalayan Railays (DHR).
  • 1915: DHR opens two new branches to Kishengunj and Teesta Valley
  • 1948: DHR is taken over by the State and it became a world heritage site on December 2, 1999.
  • May 2000: Diesel hauling of DHR inaugurated.



  • Inertesting facts about indian railways

    • Shortest station name: Ib near Jharsuguda on the Howrah-Nagpur main line(South Eastern Railway.
    • · Longest station name: Venkatanarasimharajuvariapeta often prefixed with Sri.on the Arakkonam-Renigunta section of the Southern Railway.
    • · Longest run (time): The Himsagar Express running between Jammu Tawi and Kanyakumari, It covers its route of 3751km in 74 hours and 55 minutes.
    • · Longest run for daily train: The Kerala Express has daily service and covers3054 km in its run (in 42.5 hours).
    • · Longest non-stop run (distance): The Trivandrum Rajdhani does not have atechnical halt at Ratlam and, therefore, travels non-stop between Vadodara and Kota(528km), covering the stretch in about 6.5 hours.
    • · Trains with no commercial halts en route: Sampoorna Kranti Exp,HowrahRajdhani, Bombay Rajdhani, Pragati Exp and Pune Shatabdi
    • · Shortest runs: Nagpur - Ajni has scheduled services that are just 3km in distance.This is mainly a service for crew to travel from Nagpur station to the workshop at Ajni.
    • · Highest number of halts: Mail and Express trains [3/99] The Howrah-AmritsarExp. leads in this category with 115 halts.
    • · Busiest Station: Lucknow which caters to as many as 64 trains per day.
    • · Stations straddling state lines: Navapur is a station that is half in Maharashtraand half in Gujarat . Bhawani Mandi station, on the Shamgarh-Kota section of theBombay-Delhi line is half in Madhya Pradesh and half in Rajasthan.
    • · Station with all the three gauges: Siliguri station.
     

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