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From: Dr. K.J. Walker & Mrs. M.E, Heath <>

Subject: Re: [ANB] Travel In India via the Railway.

Date: 30 Oct 1998 17:20:40 -0500


Dear Anil,
If you're resident outside India you should definitely get an
Indrail
Pass, unless you are planning very little travel. It confers numerous
advantages -- there was a long discussion about this on this list less
than
a month ago.
One of the best train rides in the world is Siliguri-Darjeeling.
Don't
miss it. Steam, too. Also Mettupalaiyam-Coonor, on the rack line. East
coast
main line (e.g. past Chilka lake) for good coastal scenery (also Kerala
and
South Kanara), Rajastan for superb semi-desert scenery, and Kalka-Simla
for
the foothills. That enough?
Re the thread about A/C 2-tier vs the old non-AC First Class, I
always preferred First. There's more privacy, less of those dreadful
obscured windows, and less noise intrusion from other compartments. I
also
felt far more secure about my luggage, with a lockable door on the
compartment. But above all, being able to see out, smell the country,
and
feel in touch! I have been using markedly less rail travel on recent
visits
to India, due to the slow disappearance of First.
Cheers
Ken Walker

Copy of posting, 11/10/98
Dear all,
I can offer a direct comparison of Indrail passes and "ordinary"
tickets, since I've used both. "Ordinary" tickets offer you no special
privileges. Before the computer booking system this often meant long
queuing
and problems with seat availability. It also meant that you paid all
reservation fees and supplements.
Indrail Passes (note NO "a") when first introduced were a truly
terriffic bargain. But they became extremely popular, and my
(unconfirmed)
impression is that their price has risen far faster than the cost of
living.
However, they are still a very good deal, because they save immense
hassle
and confer certain really worthwhile privileges. First, once you have an
Indrail, you have no further booking or reservation fees to pay. Second,
telegraphic and advance booking is possible (it used to be 90 days in
advance, but I note now 1 year?) simply by quoting the Pass serial
number
and passenger's name. Thirdly, possession of an Indrail generally means
that
you can access the Tourist quota at any station having one, AND that --
provided only that some Congresswalla is not ahead of you -- you have a
chance at any unused VIP quota seats. This is especially useful when
something goes wrong (as it so often does -- not always IR's fault!) and
you
need a booking urgently out of Guntur or Ansansol or somewhere like
that.
Fourthly, many stations have a Tourist guide or tourist booking counter
where it is generally possible to get priority assistance (though avoid
VT -- endless delays). Again, Indrail smooths your path.
Ordinary fares are probably considerably cheaper -- especially if
travelling III class. But what the Indrail does offer is vastly greater
convenience.
Your choice.
Ken Walker

-----Original Message-----
From: Anil Balchandani <abalchan@fnc.email
To: irfca@cs.email <irfca@cs.email
Date: Saturday, 31 October 1998 6:52
Subject: [ANB] Travel In India via the Railway.


>Hello everyone,
> I am going to make a trip to India and would like to travel around by
Train. I have followed some of the discussion for a week and would like
to
ask for some help on some general questions.
>
>1. Are train tickets (between major cities) difficult to get during the
Dec/Jan period? If so, what should the usual advance purchase be?
>
>2. Is it costlier to purchase a tix in US dollars? Are there certain
seats
allocated for people buying in foreign currency?
>
>3. Are major trains fitted with facilities for the handicapped.
>
>4. Is it generally advisable to travel alone? If so, what are
precautions
to take?
>
>5. What are some of the more picturesque journeys to take in India?
>
>6. Is there train service from India to Pakistan?
>
>Thanks in advance
>Anil
>

From: Dr. K.J. Walker & Mrs. M.E, Heath <>

Subject: Re: More Plinthed locos

Date: 30 Oct 1998 17:46:02 -0500


Dear Jishnu,
Just a quick one. The 16 prototype WP's were bult by Baldwin, but it
is
stretching it to say that they are of a "Baldwin pedigree". Fact is,
they
were designed by Indian Railways' own engineers, though many aspects of
the
postwar designs for BG and MG were influenced by the US and Canadian WD
locos, and were a departure from the more British-influenced practice of
the
previous generation of designs.
The WP/WG and YP/YG design pairs shared bar frames, 2-cylinder
simple
design, big fireboxes for poor quality coal, and a common boiler. They
were
simple, rugged, and very effective designs, of which Indians can be
proud --
designed and mostly built in India. And yes, the WP was handsome and
VERY
impressive.
Cheers
Ken Walker

You wrote:
They come from the very fine Baldwin pedigree, and many of
>their cousins ran on vrious railways in the US for many years.

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Some facts about the Fairy Queen

Date: 30 Oct 1998 19:06:05 -0500


Gang,

The resurrected Fairy Queen now does regular Delhi - Alwar - Delhi runs.
Some facts which were put up on a TV program recently - FQ was THE loco
to run the Bori Bundar (Mumbai VT) - Thana train : which was the first
train on Indian soil more than 125 years ago (not sure). FQ was also the
loco which hauled troop trains to suppress the Indian Mutiny of 1857
(?). The mutiny was the event which eventually sparked off the freedom
movement.
The FQ should be rightly regarded as an extremely rare loco - the oldest
working loco anywhere in the world. But to say that the USP of this trip
is the magic of steam is IMHO stretching the point too far. I (and many
others like me) would be very happy if an ordinary train could be
REGULARLY / DAILY run with a 'normal' loco like a YP/YG/WP/WG. Now that
would be magic of steam - unadulterated with tourist crap. Can I afford
the FQ trip ? - I cannot - but an ordinary ticket behind a regularly run
steam service - I can !
I am not very keen to rub shoulders with glitterati and the spend a
night in a castle (now a part of resort) - I will be more comfortable
sitting on the Alwar platform waiting for my return link.
The FQ is not a very pretty loco. It is a functional loco - and clearly
stretched widthwise to sit on the broad gauge. This loco was designed
much before any sense of Industrial design was formalized.
Waiting for our new pal Harsh Vardhan to fill in some details about the
FQ.

Apurva Bahadur

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Homing at Chennai

Date: 30 Oct 1998 23:38:50 -0500




Alan Sponberg wrote:

> In response to my query about travel between Chennai and Nagpur Apurva
> Bahadur wrote:
> >
> >My favorite choices will be the first two trains - GT & TN Express -
both are
> >superfast trains (2 series) with rakes homing at Chennai (the 6
number)
>
> Could you explain the significance of the bit about "2 series" and
also
> about the "rakes homing at Chennai (the 6 number)"? (I'm afraid I'm
too much
> of a neophyte for this discussion group, but I do find the technical
details
> intriguing.)

Now the mystery of Indian Railways begins to bite Alan !

A super fast train (the number will start with the digit 2 in the
thousands place)
is a priority service. It will be fast (obviously !), with good
accommodation, and
with limited stops. It will be generally in time and is recommended for
long
distance travel. With the ticket you do pay an additional 'superfast'
charge.
The point about rakes homing at Chennai. The trains homing for
administrative and
maintenance purposes to Southern Railways (SR) will carry the number
6XXX while
super fast homing to SR will have numbers like 26XX. Now if a train is
homing at
Chennai (as would be in case of the TN & GT express) a whole load of
senior
officials would ensure that these trains leave Chennai on time. Even if
the New
Delhi - Chennai TN or GT is running very late and has not arrived at
Chennai -
there are good chances that the Chennai - New Delhi TN or GT will leave
on time.
Heads would roll if a Super fast train gets delayed - specially at its
home
station. At New Delhi end the SR rake will be taken for cleaning and
trip
maintenance and then sent on a run back to Chennai. But as the rake is
'foreign'
in origin, if the MAS - NDLS rake arrives late, the NDLS - MAS express
would leave
only after the maintenance and cleaning of the incoming rake.
In short a Super fast train and a rake homing to the starting point have
a good
chance of being punctual.
I hope I have not confused you further.

Apurva

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Thanks for the help!

Date: 31 Oct 1998 00:07:04 -0500


Madhav Acharya wrote:

> The view is better because you don't have the discolored (and often
cracked)
> windows in the AC class. However, I would not recommend putting your
head too
> close to the bars on the windows unless you're sure they're clean -
also, if
> you're close to the diesel loco you can get an eyeful of dirt and soot
(I
> loved it though !)

The ordinary 1st class berths are the widest in the IR - They are Huge.
The 2
AC berths are cramped by comparison. In the 2 AC the berths alongside
the
passage are actually smaller than the 4 berths in the cubicle. As luck
would
have it we have traveled extensively on the two side berths with our
small baby
and a mountain of luggage. I am an ordinary Indian size but I too do not
fit
fully in the side berth in either length or breadth !

The old first class was the best - privacy - One of the most luxurious
journeys
I have had is by 3004 Down Mumbai - Howrah Express via Allahabad from
Mumbai to
Katni. There were four of us and we had a great sense of privacy and
security.
We could leave our wallets and watches lying about the berth (the
windows were
obviously closed at night). This security is absent in the 2 AC or the 3
AC.
The old Ist Class does not regularly offer bedroll (you can request but
it is
not guaranteed) - so you have to carry your own. The 2 AC provides a
bedroll as
a part of the ticket (it is required due to the low temperature inside)
and a
travel in the 2 AC allows you to arrive totally fresh and fatigue free.
With
the old 1st class you arrive hot, dusty, tired, dirty but very much
more
learned as you stare at India through the big windows.

Each type has its advantages - I have had some of the best sleeps on my
life in
the AC sleeper - a state of dreamless existence for hours at end.

> I was in India this past winter and got some really great pics of a
WDM-2
> in Sec'bad (my friend's Dad was GM/SCR and got us on board for a
little test
> drive). I'll put these on my website just as soon as I can scan them.

Lucky guy !

> I was also able to see the diesel shed at TKD and got a
> ride in the diesel loco simulator
> which was quite neat except when the power went off. They were fixing
WDM2s
> as well as the WDP loco
> which looks pretty similar except it is more rounded. I personally
prefer
> the WDM2 -

The Tughlakabad (TKD) shed is one the most important diesel sheds in the
country. Many new types of locos are allotted here. WDG 2, WDP 1 etc
are homed
here. The WDP and the WDG series of course an exercise in ugliness with
the
rounded short hood. But the DLW has reverted back to the ''half a
hexagon'
profile (of the classic WDM2) in the newer WDG2s.
The WDG2s sound great though with a deep booming exhaust with instantly
demand
a respect. Does the WDP 1 (BoBo bogie - meant for fast intercity
expresses)
have a reversed driving position (driver on the left - also short hood
entry
door shifted on the right) and a wheel type controller ? Which trains
links do
the WDP 1 work ? The TKD staff would be able to tell.
If you no access to a scanner - you could snailmail a print to me and I
could
scan and upload it for you. Where are you writing from ? I am in Pune /
India.

Apurva

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: My Trip to Jamshedpur

Date: 31 Oct 1998 00:35:11 -0500


Gang - This message was sent earlier but did not appear on the IRFCA
list. So I am resending it.

> At
> >Igatpuri I saw the Mangala Express bound for Cochin, with a
> doubleheaded
> >wdm2's in red white and blue Livelry,from Ernakulam sheds. On
>
> Seems to me that the Mangala Exp. changes between AC elec. and diesel
> locos. at Igatpuri itself. Also, they must have increased the no. of
> coaches beyond 18, thus, necessatiting a double-heading.

Unless it goes all the way to New Delhi by Diesels like Karnatak Exp (is
this true ?)The Mumbai division Mail/Express drivers are not trained for
WDM2s having worked electric locos all their lives. However there is a
Goods
and Passenger drivers homing at Kalyan who routinely work WDM2s as well
as
electric's. So they must be taking over the Mangala Exp from Igatpuri
and
handing over to the Konkan Rail drivers at Panvel.
But as per the time table the Mumbai division actually ends at Rohe and
as
the distance between Igatpuri to Rohe is not all that much, it is
possible
that Mumbai division drivers take this train upto Rohe.

> Improving its timings shouldn't be a big problem, since the present
> schedule is pathetic. How I wish they would also consider removing
> certain unnecessary halts such as Chakradharpur, Kharagpur and Raipur
> and give it a genuine superdeluxe status.

Kharagpur is the divisional HQ of the SER so a halt in a must. Howrah is
under Eastern Rail and the SE services from HWH actually home to
Kharagpur.
So a halt at KGP is a must. Chakardharpur is a station where staff
change
(drivers, ticket checkers etc) although how many passengers use this
station
is debatable. Raipur is also a gig district level town with a lots of
administration (not railways) located here. As a matter of interest the
HWH
- Rourkela Shatabdi Exp stops at Chakradharpur while the biweekly HWH -
Pune
Azad Hind Express does not !

Apurva

From: Anne Ogborn <>

Subject: Timetables have arrived/concessions

Date: 31 Oct 1998 01:00:02 -0500




Just got the timetables! I'm already ecstatic -
They've got such gems as:

23. Medical Aid -
In case any medical aid is required on account of any sudden injury
or
illenss, please contact the Guard,
conductor, or Coach Attendant. The Railway Staff will try to arrange for
a
Doctor to attend and to supply medicines at
the prescribed charges so as to the train is not detained for the
purpose
causing inconveinence(sic) to other passengers
or as may be necessary for the patient to discontinue his journey by
that
train to receive proper medical aid.

Since nobody entered my contest (and it's the end of the period,
folks), maybe I should give the prize to the
first person who can produce a clear explanation of what that means.

There are a couple of amazing pages that list Rail Travel
Concessions
(158-159 CR timetable). Here's a sample:

Trained Nurses, Midwives %25
Bonafide professional enertaining parties %50
Amateur Artistcs alone or in group %75 (II & SL class, 50% in
1st)
Unemployed youths appearing in interviews for seeking jobs
%50

I can't believe anybody's actually been able to get these concessions!

Are bhai, mai.n Dai Ma hu.n, isiliye mujhe concession de do.

Aaah... IR, like nothing else on earth.

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Nilgiri Rly.

Date: 31 Oct 1998 03:02:05 -0500




VIRAF P.. MULLA wrote:

> Hi Gang,
>
> My friend I.S.Anand a railway fan and an electrics freak has just
returned
> from the south with the information that the YAM's will last till next
> year.

Is it not a hare brained idea ? Is this the swiss alps ? A 25 KVAC line
will
be laid from Mettupalayam to Ooty just to utilize the spare YAM 1s. What
about
the rack section ?

I have heard from a supporter of diesel traction (he has to be - he
sells
diesel engine - prime movers not locos - for a living) that
electrification of
a line (as promised in election manifestoes etc) is not all that rosy a
picture. Unless the gross traffic justifies the cost of charging the
line, the
substations, the overhead catenary and the expensive electric locos. Our
man
says that often electrification is pushed through so everyone earns lots
of
bucks rather than to satisfy a real need.
Diesel is more cost effective for low density lines and Mettupalayam -
Udagamandalam is hardly a high capacity mineral line, is it ? Why can't
CLW/DLW/S&N/Ventri and all the combined talent we have in India design a
new
loco for this section?
It would have to be diesel. Are there any rack locos using Diesel power
anywhere in the world ?

While on the same subject, I want to understand why the Neral Matheran
had a
pulling loco and individual brakes men per coach (to stop a coach in
case of
a coupling failure) rather than a pushing loco like the Ooty line.
which
would naturally arrest a coupling failed coach ?
The Matheran light railway have new locos - I do not know the
designation
(NDM 6 ?) replacing the Jung & Jungenthal NDM 1, 1955 as per the maker's
plates.
The original engines of the NDM 1 (there are two engine in each
articulated
hood driving a common hydraulic pack via dog clutch) were replaced by
Cummins
NTA 855s. As these engines are bigger than the original (which were the
original power packs) there is a fabricated 'parasol' erected over the
hoods
to accommodate the larger engines. Note that during climbing (the down
journey
!) both the engines are running while during descent (say with the 604
Up
passenger) only one engine runs.

Apurva

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Timetables have arrived/concessions

Date: 31 Oct 1998 03:22:06 -0500


Anne,

Great to hear that you have the TTs. I was getting worried whether they
will reach you at all. Why have you listed only this section, most of
them are quite quaint - check out the money that a patient is supposed
to pay the doctor - something like 50 paise per pill (any pill there are
no specifications) and Rs 1 per injection (what might that contain ?).
Also check out the duties of an attendant listed in the same section, I
do not have the my timetable at hand but looks like we can continue this
thread for a long time !
It will be fun to hear your interpretation of the rule book. I am a
desi Indian so I am supposed to talk this way and follow those rules -
what about you ?
Have you yet come across the ads promising freedom from 'personal'
problems like sexual weakness and venereal disease ? Gang - this is the
railway time table that we are discussing ! One of the funniest books
around.

Apurva

Anne Ogborn wrote:

> Just got the timetables! I'm already ecstatic -
> They've got such gems as:
>
> 23. Medical Aid -
> In case any medical aid is required on account of any sudden
injury or
> illenss, please contact the Guard,
> conductor, or Coach Attendant. The Railway Staff will try to arrange
for a
> Doctor to attend and to supply medicines at
> the prescribed charges so as to the train is not detained for the
purpose
> causing inconveinence(sic) to other passengers
> or as may be necessary for the patient to discontinue his journey by
that
> train to receive proper medical aid.

From: Shankar <>

Subject: Re: Homing at Chennai

Date: 31 Oct 1998 11:26:07 -0500


Hello Alan,
If I might butt in, in your dialog with Apurva. (with due apologies to
Apurva).

Let me explain the 2 and 6 series in as simple a way as possible.

As you knw, the IR is divided into nine operational zones (six more have
been
added recently, but that is besides the point). For administrative ease,
each
railway has been allocated a certain digit:
1xxx: Central Railway 2xxx: Superfast trains 3xxx: Eastern Railway
4xxx: Northern Railway 5xxx: North Eastern (I think)
6xxx:Southern Railway
7xxx:South Central Railway 8xxx: South Eastern Railway and
9xxx: Western Railway.

Trains ORIGINATING from a certain railway will have numbers starting
from
the digit allocated to their railway. All superfasts in all regions have
their numbers starting with 2xxx.

In your above example, both the TN and GT are superfasts, hence have
their
numbers commencingwith 2: 2621/2622 TN Exp and 2615/2616 GT Exp.

Actually, its the 6 which has caused all the confusion. Actually, what
Apurva means that SR trains originating out of Madras will usually have
their numbers commencing with 6, eg. 6511/6512 Madras (Chenai)-Bombay
(mumbai) Exp.
What Apurva meant was that Madras is Zone 6: SR.

The system is actually quite easy if you know it. eg,1077/1078 Poona
(pune)-Jammu Jhelum Exp is a CR based train (as 1xxx is CR),
5623/5624 Cochin-Gauhati exp is a NE based train (as 5xxx is NE),
2641/2642 Coromanded Exp is a superfast (as 2xxx is superfast: actually,
the
second number in the 2xxx series is supposed to denote the region the
superfast is based: 26xx from SR. 21xx from CR, 27xx from SC
etc.Shatabdis
are numbered in the 20xx series),9023/9024 Bombay-Ferozepore Janata Exp
is a
WR based train (as 9xxx is WR) and so on. The system is supposed to tell
you
at a glance like this.
Best regards.
Shankar



At 10:50 AM 10/30/98 -0700, you wrote:
>In response to my query about travel between Chennai and Nagpur Apurva
>Bahadur wrote:
>>
>>My favorite choices will be the first two trains - GT & TN Express -
both are
>>superfast trains (2 series) with rakes homing at Chennai (the 6
number)
>
>Could you explain the significance of the bit about "2 series" and also
>about the "rakes homing at Chennai (the 6 number)"? (I'm afraid I'm too
much
>of a neophyte for this discussion group, but I do find the technical
details
>intriguing.)
>
>
>

From: Shankar <>

Subject: Re: Some facts about the Fairy Queen

Date: 31 Oct 1998 11:26:08 -0500


At 08:36 AM 10/31/98 +0530, you wrote:
>Gang,
>
>The resurrected Fairy Queen now does regular Delhi - Alwar - Delhi
runs.
>Some facts which were put up on a TV program recently - FQ was THE loco
>to run the Bori Bundar (Mumbai VT) - Thana train : which was the first

OOPS. OBJECTION, YOUR HONOR. THE BORIBUNDER-THANA (INDIA'S FIRST TRAIN:
16
APR 1853) WAS ACTUALLY HAULED BY THREE ENGINES: CALLED SULTAN, SAHIB AND
SINDH. NONE OF THESE IS UNFORTUNATELY PRESERVED,THOUGH ONE OF THESE
ENGINES
(I THINK SULTAN) WAS DISPLAYED OUTSIDE THE CHIEF MECH. ENGR.'S OFFICE AT
BYCULLA IN BOMBAY FOR A WHILE.

HOWEVER, YOU ARE NOT ENTIRELY INCORRECT. FAIRY QUEEN'S
SISTER ENGINE "EXPRESS" HAULED THE FIRST TRAIN IN EASTERN
INDIA BETWEEN HOWRAH AND RANIGUNJ IN 1855. "EXPRESS" AS I
LAST KNEW IT WAS ALSO PRESERVED, AT THE JAMALPUR WORKSHOP.

PERHAPS IT WOULD BE A GOOD IDEA TO RESURRECT THE EXPRESS SO THAT SHE CAN
GIVE A BIT OF RESPITE TO THE FAIRY QUEEN.

HARSH AT THE FNRM, ANY IDEAS?


>train on Indian soil more than 125 years ago (not sure). FQ was also
the
>loco which hauled troop trains to suppress the Indian Mutiny of 1857
>(?). The mutiny was the event which eventually sparked off the freedom
>movement.
>The FQ should be rightly regarded as an extremely rare loco - the
oldest
>working loco anywhere in the world. But to say that the USP of this
trip
>is the magic of steam is IMHO stretching the point too far. I (and many
>others like me) would be very happy if an ordinary train could be
>REGULARLY / DAILY run with a 'normal' loco like a YP/YG/WP/WG. Now that
>would be magic of steam - unadulterated with tourist crap. Can I afford
>the FQ trip ? - I cannot - but an ordinary ticket behind a regularly
run
>steam service - I can !
>I am not very keen to rub shoulders with glitterati and the spend a
>night in a castle (now a part of resort) - I will be more comfortable
>sitting on the Alwar platform waiting for my return link.

YOU CAN SAY THAT AGAIN, MY FRIEND. NOTHING LIKE SPENDING EVEN A WHOLE
NIGHT
WAITING FOR YOUR CONNECTION AS LONG AS THE TERRITORY IS STEAM WORKED.
HOW I
LONG FOR THOSE SMALL PLEASURES AGAIN. AND THE PLEASURE OF GOING TO BED
HEARING ONE TYPE OF WHISTLE AND WAKING UP IN A STRANGE STATION NEXT
MORNING
HEARING A DIFFERENT TYPE OFWHISTLE,
MEANING THAT YOUR ENGINE HAD BEEN CHANGED IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.
THE
LOUD CHUGCHUGGA CHUGGA FROM THE HEAD OFYOUR TRAIN WHEN YOU WAKE UP AT
MIDNIGHT FOR A PEE,AH FOR THE PLEASURES OF STEAM!


>The FQ is not a very pretty loco. It is a functional loco - and clearly
>stretched widthwise to sit on the broad gauge. This loco was designed
>much before any sense of Industrial design was formalized.
>Waiting for our new pal Harsh Vardhan to fill in some details about the
>FQ.

BEST REGARDS.
SHANKAR
>
>Apurva Bahadur
>
>
>

From: Vdate <>

Subject: Re: Timetables have arrived/concessions

Date: 31 Oct 1998 12:32:53 -0500


One routine thing we, college students, did was to go DOS's office and
get our
discount orders. So it is done. Incidentally IR employees get deep
discount
(almost equal to PTO-partial travel order -- from Amtrak.

From: Siddhartha Joshi <>

Subject: Re: Reply to Poras

Date: 31 Oct 1998 13:41:06 -0500



> That was the time , the Geetanjali was hauled by a yellow and brown
WAM-4
> right from Igatpuri through to Howrah and back.This belonged to
Tatanagar shed
> and rann really well. True , this train


I've traveled that sector a bit and have also noticed that the Tatanagar
WAM4's are always impeccable!!

Siddhartha.

From: Sridhar Shankar <>

Subject: Re: Nilgiri Rly.

Date: 31 Oct 1998 15:52:57 -0500


Apurva,

I completely agree that this idea has no chance in hell of actually
going
anywhere. 4 trains a day (each with 4 coaches) simply does not justify
the
investment required to electrify the section. That said, it would be
wonderful if by some miracle this really works out (perhaps if the guys
doing the cost benefit decide to drop a trailing zero from the cost
side).

My folks used to live there for a long time and I have fond memories of
the numerous trips I have made in these trains (often with no particular
destination in mind).

-Sridhar

****************************************************************

Sridhar Shankar 1616 E. 50th Place, Apt.13A
GSB'99 Chicago, IL 60615
University of Chicago (773) 752 1131
*****************************************************************

On Sat, 31 Oct 1998, Apurva Bahadur wrote:

>
>
> VIRAF P.. MULLA wrote:
>
> > Hi Gang,
> >
> > My friend I.S.Anand a railway fan and an electrics freak has just
returned
> > from the south with the information that the YAM's will last till
next
> > year.
>
> Is it not a hare brained idea ? Is this the swiss alps ? A 25 KVAC
line will
> be laid from Mettupalayam to Ooty just to utilize the spare YAM 1s.
What about
> the rack section ?
>
> I have heard from a supporter of diesel traction (he has to be - he
sells
> diesel engine - prime movers not locos - for a living) that
electrification of
> a line (as promised in election manifestoes etc) is not all that rosy
a
> picture. Unless the gross traffic justifies the cost of charging the
line, the
> substations, the overhead catenary and the expensive electric locos.
Our man
> says that often electrification is pushed through so everyone earns
lots of
> bucks rather than to satisfy a real need.
> Diesel is more cost effective for low density lines and Mettupalayam
-
> Udagamandalam is hardly a high capacity mineral line, is it ? Why
can't
> CLW/DLW/S&N/Ventri and all the combined talent we have in India design
a new
> loco for this section?
> It would have to be diesel. Are there any rack locos using Diesel
power
> anywhere in the world ?
>
> While on the same subject, I want to understand why the Neral Matheran
had a
> pulling loco and individual brakes men per coach (to stop a coach in
case of
> a coupling failure) rather than a pushing loco like the Ooty line.
which
> would naturally arrest a coupling failed coach ?
> The Matheran light railway have new locos - I do not know the
designation
> (NDM 6 ?) replacing the Jung & Jungenthal NDM 1, 1955 as per the
maker's
> plates.
> The original engines of the NDM 1 (there are two engine in each
articulated
> hood driving a common hydraulic pack via dog clutch) were replaced by
Cummins
> NTA 855s. As these engines are bigger than the original (which were
the
> original power packs) there is a fabricated 'parasol' erected over the
hoods
> to accommodate the larger engines. Note that during climbing (the down
journey
> !) both the engines are running while during descent (say with the 604
Up
> passenger) only one engine runs.
>
> Apurva
>
>

From: Pushkala Raman <>

Subject: Re: Homing at Chennai

Date: 31 Oct 1998 17:44:21 -0500


Hi Gang

I am trying (very hard) to track along with the explanations for the
numbering of trains. While I have understood how superfast trains are
numbered, I am not sure what happens to a non super fast train. For
instance, Shankar pointed out in his message that 6511/6512 is the
Madras
(Chennai)-Bombay, where the 6xxx stands for a SR train. In this case,
what
does the 5 (second digit) stand for? It does not seem to represent the
destination railway.


>
>Actually, its the 6 which has caused all the confusion. Actually, what
>Apurva means that SR trains originating out of Madras will usually have
>their numbers commencing with 6, eg. 6511/6512 Madras (Chenai)-Bombay
>(mumbai) Exp.
>What Apurva meant was that Madras is Zone 6: SR.
>

Pushkala Raman (praman@garnet.email
----------------------------------------------------------------------

Florida State University, Marketing Department
Room 525 Rovetta Business Building, Tallahassee FL 32306-1110
Ph: 850-644-9283

<A HREF="http://garnet.acns.fsu.edu/~praman">http://garnet.acns.fsu.edu/~praman</A>

From: Anne Ogborn <>

Subject: Re: Timetables have arrived/concessions

Date: 31 Oct 1998 19:44:40 -0500




Apurva Bahadur wrote:

> Anne,
>
> Great to hear that you have the TTs. I was getting worried whether
they
> will reach you at all. Why have you listed only this section, most of
> them are quite quaint - check out the money that a patient is supposed
> to pay the doctor - something like 50 paise per pill (any pill there
are
> no specifications) and Rs 1 per injection (what might that contain ?).

My, I think I'll start doing my being sick on the trains!

>
> Also check out the duties of an attendant listed in the same section,
I
> do not have the my timetable at hand but looks like we can continue
this
> thread for a long time !
> It will be fun to hear your interpretation of the rule book. I am a
> desi Indian so I am supposed to talk this way and follow those rules -
> what about you ?

Oh, Apurva! You being desi Indian I think you're supposed to ignore
these rules
and
slip the office sahib ten bucks to make it work out right. Do you really
talk
this way? 8^)

The form to fill out describing the dacoits is quaint if you don't need
it
=8X


>
> Have you yet come across the ads promising freedom from 'personal'
> problems like sexual weakness and venereal disease ? Gang - this is
the
> railway time table that we are discussing ! One of the funniest books
> around.
>
> Apurva

Don't seem to be any of those in the TT's , but I have a funny story
about them.

There's one of these "sex clinics" in Vivek Vihar, in our ilaka. You
may know
we
go out on Divali and ask a donation from all the shopkeepers.
Well, last Divali I was doing this and we came to this little shop. I
had a
cough, but I
always seem to be sick in India, so I was out anyway.
I asked for the donation, but they weren't giving. So my guru bhai came
in, not
knowing what sort
of place it was but seeing it was a doctor office, and said, "OK - if
you won't
give us money, then give us some service
instead. You fix my guru bhai".
The doctor, not realizing she meant fix my cold, looked like he was
about to
explode, and said,
"Madam, I fear I can do nothing to help your friend. Cases like yours
are
incurable"
She looked at me and her eyes got big as saucers! She grabbed me and
started
telling
me she didn't want me to die, etc. etc. and didn't calm down until I
showed her
the sign outside.
Then she went back in and demanded the doctor either "fix us" or give us
money.
We got the money. 8^)

The constant references to compensating the widows and families of dead
travellers must be a real comfort
to the public, who naturally read the timetable while riding!

I'm quite pleased to see AIDS prevention ads, even more pleased to see
commercial concerns
sponsoring them and happily putting their names on them.

I notice a nice ad for the NRM on pg 114 of the Aug 98 C.R. timetable.

Yup, they're interesting reading, and I haven't even started deciphering
the
tables yet!

Love & Strength,

Annie

From: Anne Ogborn <>

Subject: Re: Timetables have arrived/concessions

Date: 31 Oct 1998 19:47:54 -0500




Vdate@aol.email wrote:

> One routine thing we, college students, did was to go DOS's office and
get our
> discount orders. So it is done. Incidentally IR employees get deep
discount
> (almost equal to PTO-partial travel order -- from Amtrak.

Wow! Somebody emailed me off list about an IR employee coming to the
states. Somebody should let him know about this.

From: Alan Sponberg <>

Subject: Re: Homing at Chennai

Date: 31 Oct 1998 21:28:18 -0500


>
>Now the mystery of Indian Railways begins to bite Alan !

Indeed it does! Now if someone could just explain to me (and my
dictionary)
what a rake is.

>I hope I have not confused you further.
>Apurva

Not at all--quite the contrary; this is very helpful information. Could
someone recommend trains from Nagpur to Lucknow?

And one more routing question: In going from Varanasi to Shimla, is it
necessary (or more time efficient) to go through Delhi? Or is there a
train
that goes more directly to Kalka via Luchnow Moradabad and Saharanpur?

Regards,
Alan Sponberg

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Homing at Chennai

Date: 31 Oct 1998 22:47:15 -0500




> In this case, what does the 5 (second digit) stand for? It does not
seem
> to represent the
> destination railway

It stands for the station to which the rake is homed for maintenance.
That
station is not necessarily the station from which the train arrives or
departs. This is due to the rake performing a linked journey to as
renamed
trains to eventually return as some other train.

Apurva

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: What is a rake

Date: 31 Oct 1998 22:51:39 -0500


Gang !

This has been discussed before - without much success I feel.
Please define the word 'Rake' for Alan. Why is it used only here and not
in the US ? First of all is is only queen's english which the
commonwealth understands (Dr. K - your comments required) or is it
Hinglish (like challan, lakh, crore) i.e. Hindi words which are now
standard Indian English terminology.
The entire IR uses this term. My best definition for them is a train of
coupled coaches with a defined purpose is known as a rake. The rake as a
collective name or a number and is normally kept coupled together. The
term rake can be used for either passenger or freight trains.
Gang please contribute to this thread and also elaborate the difference
between a rake and a formation.

Apurva

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