Since its inception, Indian Railways always has remained as the backbone of the country’s transport system, and there is no denying to this fact. It was during the British rule that the first train had been introduced. Since then, its popularity and network only increased with time to become the country’s major public transporting system. With India being just next to China in terms of population, Indian Railways became the solution to help people to reach to almost every corner of the country.
Reasons for Indian Railways to take the top spot in the transportation system
- The diverse cultures and practiced followed by the people of the country have been brought together to form the real ‘Indian by Indian Railways.
- It is used for reaching both short and long distances.
- Quite reliable, safe and quick.
- Excellent mode of transport for all ages and groups.
- The network is of total light of more than 39,200 miles (63,140 km).
- It is regarded to be the world’s heaviest and busiest carriers, carrying more than five billion passengers & 350 million tonnes of freight annually.
Being backbone to the country’s transport system, it runs on three types of tracks, namely:
- Broad Gauge: It is considered to be among the prevalent track type being 5.5 ft. (1,676 mm) wide. Around 86,526 km track is said to be of this type running all over the country.
- Meter Gauge: In few places Broad Gauge type is not found to be feasible, and hence, there is used Meter Gauge. But it covers very few length of the network.
- Narrow Gauge: It is present at some locations, especially in the hilly stretches. Narrow Gauge is said to cover about 3,651 km and used mainly in Darjeeling and Nilgiris stretches. To implement Unigauge project for converting all tracks present to Broad Gauge type, concerted arraignments have been made.
Indian Railways does boast of covering a vast stretch of the country from East to West and North to South. More new areas and tracks are being laid with every project to help passengers to reach their destination. This is termed to be a huge transportation system with multifaceted aspects. From 63,028 km length, about 16,000 km track is electrified.
It is into different categories that passenger accommodations tend to fall into. They are:
- 1A 1stClass AC
- 2A AC 2 Tier
- 3A AC 3 Tier
- CC AC Chair Car
- 2S Seater Class
The mascot of Indian Railways is ‘Bholu.’ The trains also have been categorized with regards to number of stops, speed, fare structure, etc. Express trains can be identified with 4 digit number, with the initial 2 digits indicating the division and the zone respectively while the last two digits being the train’s serial number. Indian Railways has also adopted modern technology, thus enabling passengers to check pnr status online to find out their reservation status. There are several sites that do allow people to find out the different details pertaining to a particular route or any route or train they wish to travel, with the click of a button.