The Indian Railways (IR) is the world's largest railway system under single management and the largest employer in the world with approx. 1.27 million employees. India's as well as Asia's first train steamed off from Mumbai (erstwhile Bombay) to Thane on April 16th, 1853 covering a distance of 34 kms. India's railway network grew rapidly to encompass a pan-Indian network of almost 40 000 kms. India and Japan have signed an agreement for the construction of a Shinkansen type highspeed rail corridor between Mumbai and Ahmedabad. This is one of seven corridors currently under consideration for highspeed train service.
IR carried approx. 22.94 million passengers daily (total 2.87 billion) during Q1/2018-19 out of which ca 45 % was non-suburban passenger traffic. IR's vast rail network (third largest in the world) encompassed 68 442 route kilometers of which 63 491 kms was broad gauge (Mar 2018). The network covers 7 172 stations and is served by over 13 300 daily passenger (incl. 5 125 suburban EMU trains) and 7 400 freight trains. Total electrified route km was 30 212 in Apr '18, ie 44.9 % of the rail network. Full electrification of the whole rail network has been planned to be implemented over the next decade using renewable energy. IR's gross revenues amounted to approx. ₹ 1.65 trillion (ca USD 23½ bn) in 2016-17.
IR's passenger reservation system (PRS) is the largest of its kind in the world. IR's plan outlay for 2017-18 is approx. ₹ 1.31 trillion (ca USD 20 bn).Train tickets can be booked on
IR hauled 1 223 million tons of freight in 2018/19. The main commodities handled by IR during 2015-16 included coal (552 million tons), iron ores (117 MT), cement (105 MT), mineral oils (43 MT), foodgrains (46 MT), fertilizers (52 mt) and iron&steel (45 MT).
A new joint-venture plant for the manufacture of upto 5000 EMUs spanning 12 years is planned to be constructed at Kanchrapara, north of Kolkata. Bids of three consortia have been shortlisted and the contract is expected to be awarded in 2018.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT, earlier referred to as CST), previously known as Victoria Terminus (VT) is the southern terminus in Mumbai for Central Railway (CR) local trains and numerous long-distance trains incl. a Rajdhani service to Delhi. The architectural style of the station is Indo-Saracenic. Construction started in 1878 and the station was completed in 1888. F.W. Stevens was the architectural engineer and designer for the station. CSMT is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is presently undergoing restoration.
See also: A City Icon - CSMT
Average Speed km/h (incl. stops)
|Scheduled Travel Time|
|Howrah (Kolkata)||Mumbai CST||Duronto Express||4xweekly||nonstop||1974||
|Mumbai Central||New Delhi||Rajdhani||Daily||5||1388||
|Mumbai CSMT||Karmali (Goa)||Tejas Express||3-5xweekly||6||552||
|Howrah (Kolkata)||New Delhi||Rajdhani||6xweekly||6||1463||
|Kolkata Sealdah||New Delhi||Duronto||4xweekly||nonstop||1473||
|Kolkata Sealdah||New Delhi||Rajdhani||Daily||6||1473||
|Howrah (Kolkata)||Chennai Central||Coromandel||Daily||12||1665||
|New Delhi||Agra Cantt.||Bhopal Shatabdi||Daily||1||195||
|New Delhi||Varanasi Jn.||Vande Bharat Express||5xweekly||2||769||96||8h|
|Delhi Hazrat Nizamuddin||Agra Cantt.||Gatimaan Express||6xweekly||1||188||
|Delhi Hazrat Nizamuddin||Chennai Central||Rajdhani||2xweekly||7||2166||
|Chennai Egomore||Madurai Jn||Tejas Express||6xweekly||2||493||
Indian Railways had till recently faced increased competition from low-cost airlines that were luring mainly first class passengers to shift to air travel. As a countermeasure, AC First fares were substantially lowered. Although Indian passenger trains are relatively slow in general, a few exceptions do exist. India's fastest train at present, the Gatimaan Express, attains a maximum speed of 160 km/h between Delhi and Agra. Rajdhani trains operate upto speeds of upto 130 km/h on certain sections. Gatimaan Express was launched in April 2016 and completes the 195 km journey from New Delhi Nizamudding to Agra Cantonment in 2 hours.
Humasafar Express trains comprise of modernized full 3-tier AC sleeper coaches.
A 3 300 hp WDM-3D class diesel locomotive at CSMT, Mumbai and manufactured by IR's DMW (Diesel Loco Modernisation Works) under license from ALCO, USA. IR's DLW (Diesel Locomotive Works) located in Varanasi has been producing the bulk (over 8 000 locomotives till date) of IR's diesel locomotives since 1963/64. The plant has also been producing the WAP-7 electric locomotive since 2017. DLW total production consisted of 321 locomotives in 2017-18.
India's longest scheduled single continous train journey can be experienced on the weekly Vivek Express, connecting Kanyakumari (southern tip of India) with Dibrugarh in Assam. The route distance of 4 282 kms is covered in 83 hours including 55 intermediate stops. IR operates fully airconditioned but affordable Garib Rath trains on selected routes medium/long distance routes. Fares on these trains are about 25 per cent lower than comparable AC 3-tier fares.
Indian Railways operates on three gauges: broad gauge (1.676 m), meter gauge (1.000 m) and narrow gauge (0.762 m and 0.610 m). All major routes are served by broad gauge (58 175 route kms at the end of 2013-14). Rolling stock incl. 5 714 diesel and 5 065 electric locomotives, over 60 000 EMU and conventional coaches and over 254 000 wagons in March 2015.
Train-18 and Train-20
Two semi-highspeed self-hauled train types are under development, the first (Train-18) of which is in limited commercial service. The Train-18 includes 16 coaches and can reach speeds of upto 160 km/h. The Train-18 has a more contemporary appearance compared to other trains presently in service in India. These new train sets are seen as replacements for the present Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains (a sleeper car version for the former) and initially a further 10 trains were planned to be inducted in FY19/20. Unfortunately production has been stalled and the future of the Train 18 is uncertain. The first train runs between Delhi and Varanasi as the Vande Bharat Express although it will not be able to attain speeds above 130 km/h due to track limitations. Development of the aluminum bodied Train 20 has been cancelled.
The first Tejas Express train introduced runs from Mumbai (CSMT) to Karmali, Goa 5xweekly (3xweekly during monsoon). This new train type includes automatic doors, personal LCD screens and many other new features and a maximum speed of 160 kph on this stretch. Another Tejas train runs from Chennai (Egmore) to Madurai covering a distance of 496 km in 6½ hrs with two halts at Tiruchirappalli Jn and Kodaikanal Rd. The 6xweekly Delhi to Lucknow Tejas service will commence on Oct 4.
Regional Rapid Transit System
A dedicated high-speed rail line from Delhi (Sarai Kale Khan) to Meerut via Ghaziabad is under construction at a cost of over ₹ 300 bn. The 82 km line (68 km elevated and 14 km underground) has been planned to include 24 stations. The project is being implemented by NCRTC. The first section, covering a distance of 17 kms from Duhai to Sahibabad, is expected to be completed in 2023 while the full line could become operational by 2025.
A high-speed railway corridor has been planned to connect Mumbai and Ahmedabad covering a distance of 508 kms. The route will start at Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) in Mumbai and terminate at Sabarmati Station in Ahmedabad and will be implemented by NHSRCL. Interim stations to be built along the corridor will include (after BKC) Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Anand/Nadiad and Sabarmati. The trains to be operated on this route will be similar to the Shinkansen E5 series ("Hayabusa") train sets used in selected high-speed rail corridors in Japan eg Tokyo to Shin-Aomori. 70 daily trains (35 trips in each direction from 6 AM till midnight, ie half hourly) are planned to run on the route and could prove to be a faster connection between the terminating cities than by air. The designed maximum and operating speeds are 350 km/h and 320 km/h respectively. The gauge used on the double track corridor will be 1435 mm. Total expenditure for the project is estimated at ₹ 1.1 trillion and the line is planned to be completed be end '23. The fare is estimated to be approx. ₹ 3 000.
IR runs the 4xweekly Maitree Express train from Kolkata to Dhaka. Kolkata (Kolkata Station) and Khulna are now connected by rail for the first time since the Barisal Express ceased operations in 1965. The weekly Bandhan Express departs from both termini every Thursday.
Mumbai Monorail extends from Chembur to Sant Gadge Maharaj Chowk (Jacob Circle) in south Mumbai, covering a distance of approx. 19½ km and 18 stations. The phase 2 segment from Wadala Depot to Jacob Circle was opened in March 2019. Mumbai Monorail is the fourth longest urban transit monorail line in the world. Although no interchange facilities exist with the suburban train network or Metro 1, some of the stations eg Bhakti Park, Jacob Circle and Chembur station are easily reached by various BEST bus routes. The Lower Parel Monorail and suburban railway stations are only 300 m apart. The rolling stock has been manufactured by Scomi Engineering of Malaysia. Each train consists of four coaches with a gross capacity of approx. 570 passengers.
Churchgate Station opened in 1867 and is located in southern Mumbai. The station is the southen terminus for Western Railway local trains. The station does not handle any long-distance trains. Despite having only four platforms/tracks, approx. 500 suburban trains depart from the station daily. The station handles daily approx. 500 000 passengers. The first train departs at 4:15 AM and the last train at 1:00 AM. WR (Western Railway) EMU rakes can consist of upto 15 coaches.
The Western Line is one of the three major lines of the Mumbai Suburban Railways extending 124 kms from Churchgate Station in south Mumbai upto Dahanu (north of Mumbai) served by 37 stations along the line. 1 367 daily trains serve 3.65 million daily passengers (Sep 2018 stats).
|Zone||Headquarters||Route Kms (31.3.15)||Freight Carried
in Million Tons (2004-05)
|Central Railway||Mumbai (Chhatrapati Shivaji)||4 042||42.98|
|Eastern Railway||Kolkata||2 666||46.95¹|
|East Central||Hazipur||3 791||58.26|
|South East Central Railway||Bilaspur||2 489||92.52|
|West Central Railway||Jabalpur||2 995||19.97|
|North Central Railway||Allahabad||3 216||5.43|
|East Coast Railway||Bhubaneswar||2 679||70.46|
|Kolkata Metro Railway||Kolkata||27|
|Northern Railway||New Delhi||7 221||41.4|
|North Eastern Railway||Gorakhpur||3 869||2.06|
|North Western Railway||Jaipur||5 554||9.05|
|North East Frontier Railway||Maligaon-Guwahati||3 996||9.94|
|Southern Railway||Chennai||5 079||27.4¹||511¹|
|South Central Railway||Secunderabad||5 922||51|
|South Eastern Railway||Kolkata||2 722||85.86¹||157.6|
|South Western Railway||Hubli||3 322||31.75|
|Western Railway||Mumbai (Churchgate)||6 440||28.35|
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Indian Railway videos are rare but I have collected a few high quality and interesting ones available through Amazon.co.uk. Just click on the product image you wish to order.
A new regulatory metro rail policy announced in 2017 includes a list of points as base requirements for any future metro projects to be approved. Besides Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru, most of the other presently operating metro systems such as Jaipur, Lucknow, Noida and Chennai have low ridership. Ridership on the Hyderabad Metro has improved recently with a record of 280k passengers on a single day in Jun '19. A boost in ridership figures can be expected once the metro systems are augmented in length and more public transport integration is put in place. Affordable ticket pricing and last-mile connectivity are also crucial factors in attracting more commuters and luring private motor vehicle users. While the heavier metro networks have not been very successful in India on a general note, less capital intensive modes of urban rail modes such as lightrail, tram, monorail or BRTS (bus rapid transit) are unfortunately still a rarity among Indian cities. A few cities have initiated BRTS usage incl. Bhopal, Surat, Rajkot, Indore, Raipur/Naya Raipur, Ahmedabad and Hubbali-Dharwad. A single monorail line is operating in Mumbai and Kolkata is the sole city in India having a tram network albeit dated. Extensive and heavily used commuter rail (EMU/DEMU) systems operate in Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and on a smaller scale in Delhi, Hyderabad and Bengaluru.
|City||Lines||System Length (kms)||Daily Passengers (thousands)|
|Buenos Aires||6||61||1 230|
|New York City||27||394||4 730|
|City||Lines||System Length (kms)||Daily Passengers (thousands)|
A two-line metro rail network is under construction in Ahmedabad. The network will cover 32 stations on two lines with a combined route length of 40 kms. Four of the stations will be underground while the rest would be elevated. The eastern segment of the East-West Line was opened to commercial service in Mar '19. The segment includes six stations and extends from the terminating station (Vastral Gam) to Apparel Park which is also a depot. The route length of the segment is approx. 6½ kms. Daily ridership was only just over 1 000 in April '19.
Phase 2 of Ahmedabad Metro was approved in Feb '19 and is planned to include a 23 km metro line extending from Motera in Ahmedabad to Gandhi Mandir located in the capital city of Gujarat, Gandhinagar. Another 5½ km line extending from the Gujarat National Law University (GNLU) to GIFT City (Gujarat International Finance Tec-City) is also planned to be included in the 2nd phase.
The last section (Green Line from Majestic to Yelachenahalli with 11 stations) of the first phase of the ₹ 64 bn (original cost estimate which has increased to ₹ 138 bn) Bengaluru metro system was commissioned in June 2017. The phase 1 network comprises of of two lines totalling 42.3 kms (Purple Line 18.1 kms / 17 stations out of which four are underground and Green Line 24.2 kms / 24 stations out of which three are underground and 21 are elevated. The Majestic (Kempegowda) is the only interchange station. 8.8 route kms is underground and the remaining 33.5 kms runs on elevated track. The first reach (eastern section of the East-West line) was opened in Oct '11 connecting Byappanahalli with M.G. Road and 31.5 kms of line had been commissioned on both lines by May 2016. Average weekday metro ridership increased to approx. 450 000 by Sep '19. Buses are nevertheless by far more used with around 4.5 million daily passengers commuting on Bengaluru city buses (gross fleet ca 6 000 buses). The second phase comprises of 89 route kms (incl. extensions to existing Lines 1 and 2, Line 3, Line 4 and the Outer Ring Road Metro) of which 13.8 km is underground. Over 70 new stations are planned to be added to the 40 stations included in the phase I network. If the set deadline of 2023 is adhered to, Bengaluru will have an extensive metro rail network extending over 140 kms.
A metro corridor to the KIAL airport is also planned routed through Jakkur and Yelahanka. To augment capacity six coach trains are gradually being inducted into service (all rakes on the Purple line are six-car configured while two rakes serving the Green line are six-car configured as at Sep '19). All trains are planned to have six cars by mid '20.
The first phase (10.2 km route length with seven stations from Koyambedu to Alandur) of the Chennai Central - St. Thomas Mount Green line began commercial operations in June '15. The line intersects with the Green Line at Alandur station. Another section (8 kms) extending from Koyambedu to Nehru Park was commissioned in May '17 while the extension upto Egmore Station and Central Station (connection to Chennai Park suburban rail station served by the South Line) was opened to the public in May '18. A single ticket for a trip from Central to the airport covering a distance of 25 kms is ₹ 70.
As for the Blue Line a 8.6 km long segment connecting the airport with five stations upto Little Mount was opened in Sep '16 and in May '18 the Blue line extension upto AG-DMS was commisioned. The remaining 10 km stretch (Blue Line) extending from AG-DMS to Washermanpet located in North Chennai was opened in Feb '19. In addition to the 42 trains (4 cars each) that will run on the phase I lines, an additional 10 trains have been ordered for the North Chennai line 9 km extension upto Wimco Nagar (estimated completion by Jun '20).
The planned Phase II with a total a revised cost of ₹ 690 bn will comprise of three lines extending 119 kms and 128 stations. The three lines planned are:
The Phase II plan is awaiting Govt. approval.
Chennai Metro presently operates ca 45 route kms on two lines. The number of daily passengers has been gradually increasing reachin around 90 000 in July '19, though still around sevenfold less than Kolkata Metro which operates a less extensive metro network (28 kms).
Delhi Metro began operations in Dec 2002 with the opening of a 8 km section on Line 1 (Red Line). Line 1 runs now from Rithala, crossing the Yamuna river to Dishad Garden in East Delhi. The 49 km second line (Yellow Line) runs from Samaypur Badli in North Delhi all the way to HUDA City Center in adjoining Gurgaon. The third line (Blue line) is the longest of the current eight lines with 50 stations and 56.8 route kms (incl. a branch line forking out of Yamuna Bank and terminating at Vaishali, located in Ghaziabad, UP), runs from Noida City Center in UP to the western suburb of Dwarka (Sector 21).
The metro system currently comprises of eight lines totalling 343 route kms and 250 stations (incl. 32 interchange stations and over 100 kms of underground lines) making it one of the most extensive metro rail systems in the world. Other more recently opened lines include the Green and Violet lines, the latter running from Kashmere Gate in Old Delhi to Raja Nahar Singh in the satellite town of Ballabhgarh. The Violet line includes some stations next to historical monuments such as the Red Fort and Jama Masjid. Single trip token fares on the Delhi Metro range from ₹ 10 upto ₹ 60 depending on the distance travelled.
An airport express rail route extends from New Delhi station to Dwarka Sector 21 via Delhi's IGI airport terminal 3. The 22.7 km (15.7 km underground and 7 km elevated) line features six stations. Air India offers baggage check-in facilities. Trains run from 4:45 AM till 11:30 PM at 10/15 min intervals. A single journey costs a reasonable ₹ 60 (less than USD 1) from New Delhi station to Terminal 3 at the IGI Airport. Eight 6-coach trains manufactured by CAF ply on the airport express line. While ridership on the Delhi Metro has fallen significantly in the second half of 2017 following two fare hikes, average daily ridership on the airport line in Nov '17 increased to almost 55 000 from 10 000 in Jul '13. The line is being extended to the Exhibition-cum-Convention Centre (ECC), 1.9 kms from the present terminus at Dwarka Sector 21.
The completed Phase II comprised of 124.6 route kms and 85 stations. Phase III which is under construction (full completion expected in 2019) includes a total of 140 additional route kms and 69 stations. Phase III includes two new lines which will feature operator-less trains and a headway of 90 seconds. Other new features include colored seats instead of steel gray, wider coaches and platform screen doors.
The first 12.6 km nine station segment (Botanical Garden, Noida to Kalkaji Mandir) of the Magenta Line running from Botanical Garden (Noida) to Janakpuri West was inaugurated in Dec '17 while the remaining 25.6 km segment of the 38.2 km line was opened to the public in May '18. The Pink line (Line 7), once completed, will extend 58.6 kms from Majlis Park to Shiv Vihar. The 21.6 km section from Majlis Park to Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus was opened in March '18 and a further 8 km section till Lajpat Nagar opened in Aug '18. The penultimate major segment (17.9 kms) of the Pink Line, extending from Shiv Vihar to Trilokpuri, was commissioned in Oct '18 and the last section extending from Lajpat Nagar to Mayur Vihar Pocket-1 was opened at the end of Dec '18. The line will be operated in two separate segments until a 1.5 km section, delayed due to land acquisition issues, is completed.
A segment on the Violet Line consisting of two new stations from Escorts Mujesar to Raja Nahar Singh (Ballabhgarh, Haryana) with a route length of 3.2 kms was commissioned on Nov 19 '18 increasing the route length of the Violet Line to 46.6 kms with termini at Kashmere Gate and Raja Nahar Singh. Ballabhgarh with a population of over 200 000 is the fourth city in Haryana to get metro rail connectivity. The other three are Gurugram, Faridabad and Bahadurgarh.
The remaining Red Line extension in Ghaziabad from Dilshad Garden to Shaheed Sthal was inaugurated in Mar '19 extending the line by 9.6 kms to a total route length of almost 35 kms with 29 stations.
The remaining stretch (length 6.7 kms and 6 stations) of the Blue Line from Noida City Centre to Noida Electronic City was inaugurated in Mar '19.
Total route length in operation: 343 kms
Total route length to be commissioned: 7½ kms
A 300 m walkway connects the Aqua Line at Noida Sector 51 station to Delhi Metro's Noida Sector 52 station on the Blue Line.
Phase IV includes plans for three lines covering a distance of 61.7 kms (22.4 kms underground and 39.3 kms elevated) and 46 stations (17 underground and 29 elevated stations) to be built at a cost of ₹ 250 bn. The lines are:
Rapid Metro operates a 12 km elevated metro loop line connecting six stations in Gurugram and an extension toward the southern reaches of the city at Sector-55-56. The line includes 11 stations. Rolling stock includes 12 train sets which operate from 6 AM till 12:36 AM. The line has connectivity with Delhi Metro's Yellow Line at Sikandarpur station. Weekday ridership is approx. 50 000.
Two sections on two lines (Line 1: Miyapur to Ameerpet - 11.9 kms and Line 3: Nagole to Ameerpet - 17.4 kms) with a combined length of 29.3 kms (longest inaugurated stretch among all metro systems in India) were commissioned in Nov '17. The remaining section of the Line 1 (Ameerpet to LB Nagar) was inaugurated in Sep '18 making Line 1 (27 kms and 27 stations) the first of the three lines to become fully operational. Hyderabad Metro comprises of 56 kms of route line served by 48 stations, the second most extensive among India's metro networks. The metro operates daily from 6:30 AM (7 AM on Sun) till 10:30 PM. Hyundai has supplied 57 three coach trains for Hyderabad Metro. The peak hour frequency is 3¼ m to 6½ m and 9 m during off-peak hours on Line 1 and 6½ m and 9 m during peak and off-peak hours respectively on Line 2. Single ride fares range from ₹ 10 upto ₹ 60. Daily ridership has increased to approx. 250 000 on weekdays.
The remaining 16 kms of the three line 72 km metro rail network (phase I) is partially under construction and is estimated to be completed by 2022. Line 2 (Green) will run from Parade Ground/Jubilee Bus Station to Falaknuma over a distance of 15 kms with 14 stations. The section from JBS to MGBS is estimated to be commissioned by end-2019. Construction of the 5½ km MGBS to Falaknuma section in the Old City is scheduled to begin in 2019 and is planned to be completed in three years. The 10 km and 8 station Ameerpet to Hitec City section of Line 3 was opened to public in Mar '19. The remaining 1½ km long segment of Line 3 extending from Hitec City to Raidurg is expected to be commissioned by Aug.
The first phase (9.6 km route length) of the Pink line began commercial operations in June '15 with terminating stations at Mansarovar and Chandpole (7 stations in between). A two station (2.3 km) extension (Phase 1B) terminating at Badi Chaupad is expected to be commissioned in Q3/19. Jaipur Metro had originally planned for two lines (Pink and Orange) with 29 stations and a total length of 35.2 kms.
Average daily ridership has fallen to just under 20 000 during 2016-17 dropping further to under 18 000 in Sep '17. As a result Jaipur Metro is making a huge loss and the denizens of the city must bear the brunt of levied cess on various services. Ridership is expected to rise only after both lines of the first and second phase are completed.
Kochi Metro's first section extending over a 13.4 km stretch with 11 stations (Aluva to Palarivattom) was commissioned in June 2017. A 5 km stretch from Palarivottam to Maharaja's College was inaugurated in Oct '17 extending the line to 18.4 kms in route length. The remaining roughly seven km section terminating at Pettah is estimated to be fully completed in 2020. The ca 5 km stretch (five stations) from Maharaja's College station till Thykoodam (ca 5.7 kms from Maharaja's College station) was commisioned in Sep '19. The total length of the line is 23.8 kms. A two kilometer extension from Pettah to Tripunithura is also on the anvil. An 11 km branch line extending from the J N International Stadium to the growth area of Kakkanad is also being planned. Average daily ridership has increased to approx. 60 000 although still significantly lower than the original project report estimation of 380 000 daily commuters for the complete 25 km phase I route from Aluva to Pettah.
Kolkata metro - Passengers getting ready to board a metro train at Dum Dum station, an important station on the northern section of the north-south line 1. The line is being extended a further 3.8 kms to Dakshineswar from the present terminating station at Noapara. This extension is planned to be commissioned earliest 2020. The ground-level station lies adjacent to the suburban rail platforms of the station connected via a pedestrian tunnel. Dum Dum is the busiest metro station on line 1 and averages 80 000 footfalls on weekdays.
The line is served by 142 train servcies (Dum Dum to Kavi Subhash) in each direction starting at 6:55 and ending at 21:55 during weekdays and Saturdays (118 trains each way). On Sundays 124 trains operate in each direction from 9:00 till 21:55.
India's first underground urban rail system became operational on Oct 24 1984 with the opening of a 3.4 km section in central Kolkata. The line was gradually extended in phases to its present length of 27.2 kms in July 2013. The underground section of the first metro line was constructed using the cut and cover method. The north-south line extends from Noapara to Kavi Subhash (New Garia) located in southern Kolkata served by 22 stations. Ridership averages at over 650 000 passengers on weekdays (total ridership during Apr-Oct '18 amounted to 126.1 m, with a daily average of 590 000). Total earnings amounted to ₹ 1.2 bn during the same period. A record 0.91 m passengers rode the metro on Oct 15 '18.
Construction of the long-awaited second line with a total length of 16.6 kms connecting Howrah Maidan and Bidhannagar Sector V (a hub for IT/technology companies) began in 2009. The revised cost of Line 2 is ₹ 86 bn. Plans are to interconnect the East-West Corridor line with the existing north-south line at the Esplanade metro station. The line would also facilitate a convenient link connecting Kolkata's two busy rail terminals, Howrah and Sealdah. Tunnelling work of the last remaining section between Esplanade and Sealdah is underway. One of the two TBMs stuck an aquifer in late Aug '19 which resulted in the destabilization and collapse of several buildings in the Bowbazar area of central Kolkata. Tunnelling work has been halted for now and a further delay in the commissioning of Line 2 can be expected.
Six of the proposed 12 stations will be underground (10.8 kms route kms) while the other six would be elevated stations. The first phase of the line (either from Salt Lake Sector V to Salt Lake Stadium covering just over 5 kms or Phoolbagan station - the latter terminating station would be commerically more viable) can be expected to become operational by end '19/early '20 while the remaining section of the line has been estimated to become operational in '22. Trial runs on the Salt Lake Stadium - Phoolbagan section began in May '19. A three line (construction of the third line originating from Joka is uncertain and has not been finalized) underground intersection station at Esplanade is under construction and will feature a bus terminus and parking garage. BEML will supply in total 14 standard gauge rakes for Line 2, each rake consisting of 6 coaches.
Three other lines are under various stages of construction although some of the sections are on hold/suspended indefinitely. These lines include Line 3 from Joka to Majerhat (ca 9 kms) which is expected to become operational by 2021, Line 6 from NSCB Airport to New Garia (32 kms), Line 4 from Jessore Rd to Noapara (5.3 kms - completion sometime in 2019 and the Airport extension is estimated to be completed in 2021). An extension upto New Barrackpur is also possible. Regarding Line 6, the first 5 km stretch extending from Kavi Subhas to Hemendra Mukherjee (Ruby), is expected to be completed by 2021. Completion of the remaining two sections, the first extending some 10 kms upto Bidhannagar Sector V and the remaining section upto the NSCBI airport is uncertain.
Five of the new ICF made AC rakes have been delivered and induction into commercial began in Apr '19. The new ICF rakes have been withdrawn from service due to various technical issues A total of 16 ICF rakes have been ordered for Line 1 in addition to 14 new AC rakes ordered from Dalian and another 10 rakes to be sourced from CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive. The first rake from China was delivered in Mar '19 and can expected to be inducted into service (possibly in 2020) after all required tests have been run successfully. Kolkata Metro has 25 rakes incl. 13 AC rakes, three new ICF-Medha rakes (upto eight rakes planned to be in service by end '19) and nine aging non-AC rakes. Some of the old non-AC rakes have been refurbished. 14 BEML manufactured rakes will be inducted into service for Line 2 of which 11 rakes have been delivered.
Archive photos and article of Calcutta Metro, including some from the inauguration day in 1984.
The remaining stretch of the Red Line (north-south direction) was inaugurated in Mar '19. The line has a route length of almost 23 kms extending from CCS Airport to Munshi Pulia via Charbagh railway station. The first 8 km long section from Transport Nagar to Charbagh was inaugurated in Sep '17. Daily ridership had been approx. 10 000 till the line became fully operational. A second line, the Blue Line, extending 11 kms in an east-west direction from Charbagh railway station to Vasant Kunj has also been planned.
The metro rail network in metropolitan Mumbai is undergoing a massive expansion. This video includes some scenes of Lines 3 and Line 4 both of which are under construction. A single metro line (Line 1) is presently operating and is a joint venture owned by Mumbai Metro One. The line extends from Versova in north Mumbai to Ghatkopar covering a distance of 10.8 kms with 12 stations. Suburban railway interchange facilities are available at Western Railway Andheri Station and Central Railway Ghatkopar Station. The line is heavily used with a daily ridership of approx. 450 000. Rolling stock is manufactured by CRRC Nanjing (PRC). The stations and trains are clean and well maintained. Headway during rush hours is approx. three minutes.
Phase I of the Mumbai metro project originally included the construction of three lines. The 11.4 km elevated Line 1 featuring 12 stations incl. one close to CSIA airport terminals began commercial operation in June 2014. Line 1 average daily ridership exceeds 350 000. Peak hour headway is 3½ minutes. The line was contracted to Reliance Energy and Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and is routed from Versova to Ghatkopar via Andheri. A Chinese company, namely Nanjing Puzhen Rolling Stock Works supplied the rolling stock.
Groundbreaking ceremonies were held on Oct '16 for Line 3 (contract value ₹ 231 bn) which, once completed, would extend from Colaba in South Mumbai upto SEEPZ in North Mumbai via the burgeoning BKC commercial area. The line will span over 33½ kms and 27 stations (incl. 26 underground) connecting among others the financial district of South Mumbai, CST, Churchgate and Mumbai Central railway stations, BKC, Worli, CSIA airport (domestic terminal) and SEEPZ. The first phase of Line 3 extending from SEEPZ to BKC is estimated to be completed by 2021. A total of 17 tunnel boring machines (TBM) are presently in operation and 31 kms (total tunnel length is ca 56 kms excl. station boxes) of tunnelling work has been completed by Aug '19. An estimated 80 % of tunnelling is expected to be completed by end-2019. Line 3 will feature 31 driver-less 8-coach rakes.
Another metro line under construction is Line 7 extending from Andheri (E) to Dahisar (E) with a total length of 16½ kms. The line will be fully elevated and include 14 stations. Line 7 is estimated to be ready by end-2020.
Line 2A, the third line under construction will extend 18½ kms connecting 17 stations between Dahisar (E) and D.N. Nagar. The line is expected to be completed be end-2020. The total cost for this line is approx. ₹ 62 bn.
Line 6, with a route length of 14.5 kms, will extend from Swami Samarth Nagar to Vikhroli with a total of 13 stations. The ₹ 67 bn corridor is being implemented by DMRC (Delhi Metro Rail Corp.). Line 6 is planned to be operational by 2022.
Line 4, with a route length of 32.3 kms, would extend from Wadala to Kasarvadalli (northern reach of Thane) served by 32 stations. The project is valued at ₹ 145 bn and the contract has been awarded. Line 4 is planned to be operational by 2022. Some civil work is underway.
Line 2B (23½ kms with 22 stations) routed from D.N. Nagar to Mankhurd - contract has been awarded and Line 2B is expected to be completed by 2023. Some civil work is underway.
BEML commenced the production of metro rakes in July '19 for lines 2 and 7.
This extensive plan for metro rail expansion includes a total of over 300 kms of route length which once commissioned would certainly alleviate public transport constraints in the Greater Mumbai area by providing high-capacity passenger transit corridors to and from growing satellite CBD's and residential districts of Mumbai and the neighbouring cities and municipalities.
Construction is underway for a two line metro rail network in Nagpur. The first phase will consist of approx. 38 route kms on two corridors. The north-south (Orange) line will extend 19.7 kms while the east-west (Aqua) line will traverse a distance of 18.6 kms. The lines will intersect at Sitabuldi. Rolling stock (69 coaches) will be supplied by China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC) Dalian. A 13½ km stretch extending from Sitabuldi to Khapri on the Orange Line was commissioned in Mar '19. The opened stretch includes a station (Airport Station) located approx. one km from Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport passenger terminal. The entire network is expected to be completed by Mar '20.
The 29.7 km long metro line (Aqua line) connecting Noida (Sector 52) with Greater Noida (Depot Station) with 21 stations is partly elevated while the rest of the line is at ground level. The completed line was inaugurated in Jan '19. China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC) supplied 76 coaches, each train consisting of 4 coaches. A 300 m pathway connects the Aqua Line at Noida Sector 51 station to Delhi Metro's Noida Sector 52 station on the Blue Line. Daily ridership has grown to approx. 17 000 in Mar '19.
The first phase (11 kms from Belapur to Pendhar) of the first metro rail line of Navi Mumbai Metro is expected to commence operations by mid-2020. The total route length of the line is 23.4 kms with 20 stations divided into three phases.
Two metro rail corridors have been planned for Pune. The first line will have a total route length of 16.6 kms of which 5 kms will be underground. 15 stations have been planned for this line which would extend from PCMC to Swargate. The second 14.7 km corridor would be elevated and include 16 stations including the Civil Court interchange station. The line would extend from Vanaz to Ramwadi. The 7 km Vanaz-Civil Court section of Line 2 and 11 km PCMC and Range Hills section of Line 1 are under construction.
Chembur Station - The Mumbai Monorail line presently runs from Chembur to Jacob Circle, a distance of approx. 19½ kms. The 2nd phase extension from Wadala Depot to Ghadge Maharaj Chowk (Jacob Circle) in south Mumbai opened in Mar '19. Although no interchange facilities exist with the suburban train network or Metro 1, eg Bhakti Park, Jacob Circle and Chembur station are easily reached by various BEST bus routes. The Lower Parel Monorail and suburban railway stations are only 300 m apart.
The first phase (Wadala to Chembur with a route length of 8.8 kms) section began commercial operations in 2014. A major fire incident in Nov '17 involving two coaches of a stationary train delayed the commissioning of the second phase. Service was resumed on the first phase section in Sep '18 with a limited number of trains. The phase 2 segment from Wadala Depot to Jacob Circle was opened in March 2019. Ridership has remained low at just over 15 000 passengers despite the opening of the second phase albeit with a low train frequency (due to a small operating train fleet). Mumbai Monorail is the fourth longest urban transit monorail line in the world. The southern segment of the line line passes through some densely populated parts of the city. Passenger capacity and train frequency should also increase as more train sets are inducted into the operating fleet. The present train frequency is 20-25 mins.