Murshidabad District (1914)
"Murshidabad" by L. S. S. O'Malley, I.C.S., in the Bengal District Gazetteers series, Bengal Secretariat Book Depot, Calcutta,1914
Made available by the Internet Archive.
Source: Library of the University of Toronto
Edited by R Sivaramakrishnan. Posted to IRFCA on: AUgust 19, 2008.
The district is served both by the East Indian Railway and the Eastern Bengal State Railway and contains three lines of Azimganj railway. The oldest is the Azlmganj branch line of the East jndjan Railway, which runs almost due east from Nalhati, a station in the Birbhum district on the Loop Line of the East Indian Railway, to Azimganj, a town in this district situated on the Bhagirathi directly opposite to Jiaganj. Its total length is 271 miles, of which 15 miles lie in this district. The stations in Murshidabad, proceeding from west to east, are Bokhara, Sagardighi, Barala and Azimganj. The line, which was constructed by a private company in 1862, was acquired by Government in 1872, when it was known as the Nalhati-Azimganj State Railway. Through communication with Suri, the headquarters of Birbhum, and thence with the Burdwan district, has been established by the Ondal-Sainthia line (from Ondal in Burdwan to Sainthia in Birbhum). This connects the Chord and Loop Lines of the East Indian Railway, and was opened to traffic in 1908.
The Azimganj branch line was the only railway in the district until 1905, when the Ranaghat- Murshidabad branch of the Eastern Bengal State Railway was opened. The latter takes off from the main line of the Eastern Bengal State Railway at Ranaghat and runs northward through the districts of Nadia and Murshidabad (which it enters a little north of Plassey) to its terminus at Lalgola Ghat on the Ganges. The length within the district is 44 1/2 miles, and there are 13 stations within district limits, viz., proceeding from south to north, Rajinagar, Beldanga, Bhabta, Sargachi, Berhampore Court, Cossimbazar, Murshidabad, Nashipur Road, Jiaganj, Bhagwaugola, Krishnapur, Lalgola and Lalgola Ghat. An additional station is being opened between Jiaganj and Bhagwangola.
The latest addition to the railway lines of Murshidabad is the Barharwa-Azimganj-Katwa branch of the East Indian line, which is an extension of the Hooghly-Katwa and Burdwan-Katwa branches of the East Indian Railway. It runs from Katwa in Burdwan through Azimganj and Dhulian to Barharwa, a station on the Loop Line in the Sonthal Parganas, and has a length, approximately, of 100 miles. With the
exception of 6 miles at either end, which lie in the Sonthal Parganas and Burdwan, it lies entirely in Murshidabad, following the western bank of the Bhagirathi.
A proposal for the construction of a light railway from Krishnagar to Jalangi in this district (via Meherpur), a distance of 56 miles, was made by the District Board of Nadia several years ago. A survey was authorized in 1905 and was carried out by the agency of the Eastern Bengal State Railway. In 1911-12 a concession was granted to Messrs. H. V. Low & Co. to float a branch company for its construction. The line, which is to be on the 2 feet 6 inches gauge, will be subsidized by the Nadia District Board.