IRFCA Mailing List Archive

Messages 641 - 660

From: vijayb <

Subject: The mystery of Gorakhpur

Date: 25 Jun 1991 15:50:00 -0500


Well, Gorakhpur is the zonal headquarters for the North-Eastern Rly. I
guess that makes it reasonably important. But I agree with Pushkar that
Kanpur, Lucknow, Allahabad and Varanasi are bigger cities. Since Gorakhpur
is not anywhere close to the New Delhi - Howrah trunk line (unlike Kanpur,
Allahabad and Varanasi), there are not too many trains passing via this city;
hence, the need for additional trains. Neverthless, I would like to see more
superfast trains introduced from Varanasi.

There is a weekly Howrah-Bangalore Exp., and a weekly Guwahati-Bangalore Exp
running via Howrah. But, a bi-weekly service may not be enough for the
present rly. minister:-).


From: Ajai Banerji <

Subject: Gorakhpur etc.

Date: 25 Jun 1991 11:33:00 -0500


Pushkar is right, Gorakhpur is not that important a place. It's population
is ranked around 10th in UP. The amin reason for so many trains terminating
here may be connected to it's being the HQ of North Eastern Railway. Perhaps
the terminal facilities at Kanpur and Lucknow may be inadequate, so many trains
from the South and West run on to Gorakhpur.
People often wonder why so many long distance trains start from Cochin. This
is essentially because Malayalis are working in all corners of the country
and there is definitely enough traffic from Kerala to many other places.
There are comparitively fewer trains terminating at Trivandrum and Mangalore
because these places are on single line sections unlike Cochin.
There already is a Howrah-Bangalore and Guwahati-Bangalore Express,which
each run once a week. In fact both are classified as superfast. Between
Madras and Howrah the following 6 trains have the same timetable:
Cochin-Howrah (2 days)

Apart from the Cochin-Howrah, all others run once a week.
However, Bangalore does need better connections with many major cities.
Perhaps we can expect a Madras-Bangalore Shatabdi once the electrification
of Jolarpettai-Bangalore is completed (End of this year?)

From: C. S. Sudarshana Bhat <B536HIND@UTARLVM1.EMAIL

Subject: Cochin-Patna

Date: 25 Jun 1991 15:34:00 -0500

That was definitely a very odd route for a train from Cochin to Patna, via
Madras and Howrah, and I bet it is to serve the interests of the travellers
between those two main cities, rather than the ostentious reason - that of
linking Cochin and Patna. A shorter path could have been : Cochin-Jolarpettai-
Katpadi-...(the Bokaro-Madras "old" Express route to be inserted here)...-BSC-
Gomoh-Patna. But would that be a FASTER route??

As to having a Shatabdi between Bangalore and Madras: HAVE merC!!!!!
The Brindavan will lose all its grandeur. NO NO NO to another Shatabdi there..

PS: I wonder if there are plans to have 21 Shatabdis in India by the time India
enters the 21st Shatabdi...

From: vijayb <

Subject: Gorakhpur, Howrah-Cochin Exp. etc.

Date: 26 Jun 1991 09:40:00 -0500

Hi Folks,

Just out of curiosity, I compared the avg. number of trains PER DAY
originating from Gorakhpur to the corresponding no. from Varanasi. Gorakhpur
doesn't stand a chance with only 4 trains per day compared to 12 from Varanasi.
And this is AFTER quite a few trains, originally terminating at Varanasi, got
extended beyond (e.g. the Lucknow-Varanasi Varuna exp. has been extended till
Mau, the N.Delhi-Varanasi Saryu Yamuna exp. has been extended till Muzaffarpur,
the Delhi-Varanasi Ganga Yamuna exp. extended till Danapur, the Dhanbad-
Varanasi exp. and the Ganga Sutlej exp. combined into one, the Dadar-Varanasi
exp. extended till Gorakhpur).

As far as connections to the south is concerned, Varanasi again is better
placed with the bi-weekly Ganga Kaveri exp., the bi-weekly Varansi-Tirupati
exp., and the weekly Varanasi-Cochin exp. From Gorakhpur, we have the
biweekly Rapti Sagar Exp. (to Cochin/Mangalore) and the biweekly Gorakhpur-
Hyderabad exp.

Guwahati/Howrah/Patna - Bangalore/Cochin/Trivandrum exps.

It all started with the introduction of the weekly Guwahati-Trivandrum exp.,
around '85(?), which had the distinction of traveling the longest distance in
India, before the Himsagar Exp. took over. This was one of the many trains
to be introduced from Guwahati soon after a new New Bongaigaon - Guwahati
B.G. line had been constructed. This was followed by the weekly Guwahati-
Cochin exp., and the five-days-a-week Howrah-Cochin exp. The next step was
to extend the Cochin-Howrah exp. to Patna, once a week, which lead to the
present Cochin-Patna exp. Also, the Howrah-Cochin exp. was restricted to
2 days, with connections to Bangalore established.


From: Lakshmanamurthy Sridhar <

Subject: First Posting

Date: 26 Jun 1991 09:47:00 -0500

Hi folks,

This is my first posting to this group. I am an ardent fan of the Indian Railways
and I am sure that this news group will keep me in touch with IR. I have a few
questions to start with,

---What were the new trains introduced this April

---When is the railway budget likely to be presented and is there a chance of a
hike in the fares.

---What's going on with the Konkan rail project

Personally, I would have loved to see Mr. Madhavrao Sindhia back as the railway minister.
I think, more new trains were introduced during his time than ever before. I
have been to Gwalior before and after the Sindhia term and the difference is striking.
Jaffer Sharif was also incharge of the railways some time back but I am not aware of
his achievements. Let's hope that he does a good job.

Thanks for this oppurtunity to share my thoughts about IR.

Sridhar Lakshmanamurthy

From: Ajai Banerji <

Subject: Historical notes

Date: 26 Jun 1991 11:16:00 -0500

The evolution of the numerous new trains on the Howrah-Madras section:
The first to start was th Trivandrum-New Bongaigaon Express in Jan 1984.
After a few months it was extended to Guwahati, once the BG line was
In April 1987 the Cochin-Howrah and Cochin-Guwahati expresses were
introduced. Both ran once a week. After a year or so the Cochin-Howrah was
made tri-weekly. At this stage there were 5 trains a week between Madras and
Howrah to supplant the existing Mail and Coromandel. Around this time the
Madras-Howrah Janata Express vanished and emerged in the avatar of the
Howrah-Tirupati express. Also, the Tirupati-Puri express vanished and a new
Dhauli express between Howrah and Bhubaneshwar started.
In late 1988 the Howrah-Bangalore and Guwahati-Bangalore expresses started.
Initially they were run as specials and did not appear in the timetables.
The final innovation was the extension of the Cochin-Howrah express to Patna
for one day, from May 1989.
Thus, the net result is that there is a superfast train from Madras to
Howrah on all 7 days.
There is also a Madras-Patna express (not superfast) which runs via
Itarsi and Mughalsarai(bypassing Allahabad) once a week.
Earlier, all the above-mentioned trains used to bypass Cuttack like the
Coromandel. But by 1989 they had started touching Cuttack. Many more stops
were introduced.

From: aravind <

Subject: Trip Report

Date: 28 Jun 1991 18:21:00 -0500

I'm back after a 3.5-week South India trip. Following are the "rail"

Jollarpettai (JTJ)-Bangalore Section:

I travelled from MAS to Bangalore City (SBC) on the Brindavan
and thence to Tiruchi (TPJ) on the
SBC-TPJ pass/exp. No visible effort to double the Kuppam-Whitefield
single line. Electrification essentially complete from JTJ to
Kuppam. Posts can be seen up to some distance beyond Bangarapet
(towards Blore).

Jollarpettai bypass in operation: in fact, the SBC-TPJ train used it,
much to my astonishment. I expected the Jpet halt to occur (around
11:30 pm) while trying to sleep, but the train never stopped, and the
Jpet station noise never happened. From the position of the engine
the next morning at TPJ, it was obvious that the train had NOT
reversed directions at Jpet. This bypass is also double-line and

Bangalore City sorely lacks space for adding new BG trains. Some
expansion of BG rake capacity was done after the Guntakal line
conversion (which i saw in '86), but the situation has remained
the same since. The amount of space for BG is limited
by the "old" and "new" station buildings. The new rly minister
will have to fix this problem before he can add substantially to
the number of BG trains at SBC.

Space problem severe enough that the rake for the SBC-MAS mail is
the same as that of the incoming MAS-SBC express.

Bangalore-Mysore line very much MG, despite 10 years (?!) of BG
conversion effort. MG section of SBC underuntilised and falling
into disrepair in spots.

More news in another installment,


From: aravind <

Subject: trip notes #2

Date: 29 Jun 1991 23:40:00 -0500

Reservations are computerized at both MAS and SBC; they're a major
improvement over what existed previously. However, it's now much
more difficult to find out in advance if vacancies exist for the
class one wants. You pretty much have to get to the counter.

MAS-Trivellore quadrupling complete until Pattabhiram; in progress
for the last stretch (10 km or so). When complete, this will allow
independent operation of the suburban trains until Trivellore.
No signs that quadrupling is planned beyond Trivellore (towards

Only two platforms at MAS to handle all suburban EMUs. Not clear how
this is enough at rush hour, but I wasn't able to check it out.
Probably the frequency does not go up significantly during rush hour.

Madras Hi-Speed Urban Rail line (Beach to Mylapore, eventually south to
Thiruvanmiyur) under construction. This one will take several years
to start.


From: Dheeraj Sanghi <

Subject: Indo-Pak-Railway Talks.

Date: 01 Jul 1991 23:18:00 -0500

Dr. Ramani has forwarded the following PTI reports on SCI.
I have taken the liberty to forward them to this list.


------- Forwarded Message

From: (S. Ramani)
Newsgroups: soc.culture.indian
Subject: Indo-Pak-Railway-Talks
Date: 1 Jul 91 18:05:49 GMT

I could not get the first item on this. It was about the
visit of a Railway Delegation from Pakistan to India.

.Newdel del173
rail two
Reciprocating, Mr. Poonegar said the Indian railways were
doing very well and the Pakistani railways were looking forwrd
to better cooperation from the Indian railways in upgrading
their system.
Mr Poonegar called for more interaction between the two
railways. He expressed interest in cooperation and help in the
area of transfer of technology, purchase of products, and said
that the Pakistani delegation looked forard to fruitful
discussions in these areas for upgradation of their
railways.(More) PTI ka roy sh
07012312 b

.Newdel del175
rail three last
the Pakistan delegation arrived here yesterday and will
be in India up to july 8. The delegation will visit the two
premier railway production units - chittaranjan locomotive
works, chittaranjan, and dlw, varanasi.
Besides renewal of the Indo - Pakitan rail agreement,
the other measures being discussed relate to ensuring smooth
flow of rail traffic in view of the increased potential for
highr levels of export by rail between the two countries. An
agreement to extend the existing agreement which expired
yesterday is likely to be signed on july 7, 1991.
The agreement was last renewed in may, 1989. PTI ka roy sh
07012313 b
S. Ramani
National Centre for Software Technology,
Gulmohar Cross Road No 9, Juhu, Bombay 400 049, India

------- End of Forwarded Message

From: Ajai Banerji <


Date: 05 Jul 1991 09:41:00 -0500

(NOTE FOR IRFCA: This is something I posted on rec.railroad. Although
it has nothing to do with the Indian railways, perhaps you may find it
This is a follow-up to my earlier posting about no Amtrak service in
5 states. Someone asked about Amtrak services in New Hampshire. The
only Amtrak stop there is Claremont, which is on the route of the
"Montrealer" from Washington to Montreal.
Indeed, Maine has no Amtrak service but does have service on Canada's Via.
On three days a week the "Atlantic" runs through Maine on its way from
Montreal to Halifax and vice versa. On three other days there is another
train , the "Coast" which runs between the same cities but not through Maine.
The eastbound "Atlantic" enters the US at Megantic and leaves at Vanceboro.
According to the Thomas Cook timetable, it runs for about 6 hours through the
US with a single stop at Brownville.
Although I haven't travelled this way myself, I did see the travelogue on
the trains of Canada which was shown on PBS some time back. Apparently
the train carries US customs personnel who make sure that no one enters or
leaves the train while it traverses the US.
This reminds me of the services in pre-glasnost East Germany. There were
several trains running between West Germany and West Berlin. Although
they did stop at a few stations in East Germany, no one was allowed to
get on or off.
The situation in the divided city of Berlin was even more peculiar.
The two main forms of rail transport were the U-Bahn (mostly underground
with some portions above the ground) and the S-Bahn (mostly above the ground
and some portions underground). The U-Bahn systems of East and West
were administered separately since the time the Wall came up. For some odd
reason the S-Bahn lines in the West were administered from the East,
which caused most of the Westerners to boycott their services.
There were a few routes where the Western trains ran through or under the East.
Two of the U-Bahn lines and one of the S-Bahn lines ran
through several "ghost" stations which were closed to the public, though one
could sometimes see guards on the platforms. Interestingly there were two
stations (Alexanderplatz and Stadt Mitte) which were served by the East
Berlin U-Bahn but also had sealed-off platforms which the West Berlin trains
passed.(Sounds a bit like the legend of the secret third level of the Grand
Central which the public has never seen). Of course, the only "legal" stop
for Western U-Bahn and S-Bahn services was Friedrichstrasse where there
were immigration checkpoints.
There was also a stretch of track near Schonehauser Allee where the West and
East S-Bahn tracks ran together apparently without any boundary in between. I
wondered if anyone had tried escaping to the West that way.
I gather that most of the S-Bahn system in the West was closed by the
mid-80s as the East Berlin authorities were losing money on it. However, with
the recent political changes it seems that many of the "ghost" stations have
been reopened and even some "ghost lines" have been reopened.
I would like to hear from anyone who has recently been to Berlin and seen
the present pattern of services.

From: Ajai Banerji <


Date: 15 Jul 1991 09:51:00 -0500

Indian railways in Western TV/movies

Our local PBS station is showing the "Great Railway Journeys
of the World"-though I suppose most of you would have seen this
already. It even came on Doordarshan in the mid-80s. This series
also appears in book form. One of the 8 chapters is about India.
Interestingly, the episode on Peru showed a standard-gauge
diesel loco which looked very much like our WDM2-perhaps it was
the same American design from Alco.
Another interesting documentary on the Indian Railways is
"Romance of the Indian Railways" with screenplay by Michael Satow.
This Brit used to work in India (as the MD of the ICI group) and
was instrumental in setting up the Rail Transport Museum in Delhi.
He has also written a book "Railways of the Raj" which should be
available in any good library. It has a lot of interesting illustrations.
Coming to movies, the Ooty hill railway features in "A Passage
to India"-remember the scene of Victor Banerjee trying to emulate
Douglas Fairbanks? In one of the scenes the station board of
Mettupalaiyam can be dimly seen. Another railway scene was shot
at Dodballapur, a small station near Bangalore.
The serial "Jewel in the Crown" had several scenes on or around
the railways. The hill train to Pankot is clearly the Shimla line.
We also see the fictitious station of Mirat Cantt.
There was a rather bad film of the early 1970s called (I think)
"The Long Duel" which featured Yul Brynner as a Pathan chief. This
film was supposedly set on the Northwest Frontier-but included several
shots of the railway station at Najibabad (a rather obscure junction
in Western UP).
The only other appearance of the Indian railways in Western movies
which I can recall is "Bhowani Junction" which was actually shot in and
around Lahore since the Indian government didn't like the story. If you
have read the novel, it is an useful exercise to try to figure out which
place the author had in mind for the fictitious Bhowani. My guess is
Jhansi or Itarsi.
Can anyone think of other Western movies in which the Indian railways

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <

Subject: IR fare increase

Date: 17 Jul 1991 15:25:00 -0500

------- Forwarded Message

From: ( G.Narotham Reddy )
Subject: India's Railway to boost fares:

Source: Summary of news from Wall Street Journal

India's new governemnt, in another move to deal with its economic
crisis, increased state owned railroad system charges, effective
Aug. 16. Freight rates, except for essential commodities, will
rise 10%. Passenger luxury travel rates will increase 15% to 20%,
but ordinary fares will rise marginally. The boosts would increase
revenue by 5.84 billion rupee( $243.4 million) in the year ending
March 31. The railroad had revenue last year of 129.2 billion
rupees and operating costs of 122.3 billion rupees, but debt
service exceeded the difference.

------- End of Forwarded Message

Does anyone have any more details about the Railwat budget ?


From: vijayb <


Date: 18 Jul 1991 15:38:00 -0500

Hi Folks,

Following are the highlights of the Jan. issue of Indian Railways:
My comments are enclosed in square brackets.

New Delhi Station
The foundation of ND stn. was laid along with many small wayside stns.
towards Bombay side-the latter from a business angle which also provided
facilities, VIP movements all over the country for amusement and sight seeing,
during the First and Second Darbar. The mutiny of 1857 necessitated the opening
of the Second Front for security reaons. In 1904, the Agra-Mathura-Tughlakabad-
Delhi/New Delhi line was opened.

[Pardon my ignorance, but what were these Darbars?]

After the Second Darbar in 1911 with the advancement of automobile service
around Delhi, construction of small stns. was abandoned but New Delhi was not
only kept alive, it also progressed. The construction of New Delhi stn.
commenced in 1900. It was completed in 1903 i.e. before the 1st Darbar. It was
then only a single line stn. comprising only two rooms, one for the stn. master
and the other for booking besides one waiting room for four passengers only on
Pahargunj side.

In 1953 with the amalgamation of State Railways, Northern Rly. was formed with
Delhi Division. At this juncture, Old Delhi was over-saturated, and New Delhi
was the alternate solution. With the formation of Delhi Division, the foundation
stone of the present building was liad in 1954 by Chm. Brahm Prakash, the then
Chief Minister of Delhi.

As of Feb.'90, New Delhi handled 31 originating mail/exp. trains, 31
corresponding terminations, and 37 passing trains, taking the total to 99!

[A humble beginning to one of the busiest stns. in India. Most probably handles
max. no. of trains per day]

Electronic Exchange at Howrah
A new 1000-line electronic exchange was inaugurated at Howrah on Nov. 21..
This replaced the existing 33-year old 500-line Auto Exchange. The first of its
kind on the Eastern Rly., this exchange was procured from ATEA, Belgium, at a cost
of Rs. 1.21 crore. The other small exchanges in the Howrah Division existing at
Railway Orthopaedic Hospital, Goods Sheds, Railway Power House, Tikiapara Car
Shed been merged with this new exchange, thereby, improving the communication

Buxar-Mokama DMU train flagged off
Sh. Janeswar Misra flagged off a Diesel Multiple Unit train from Patna Jn.
on Dec. 11. The new DMU train is meant to provide fast suburban service on the
non-electrified section.

[Hopefully, this will reduce the misery of long distance passengers traveling on
trains via Patna-Mughal Sarai]

Remodelling of Kesinga Stn.
Sh. Bhakta Charan Das, the then Minister of State for Railways, laid the
foundation stone for remodelling of the railway stn. at Kesinga in Orissa, on
Dec. 6. Additional quota of berths has already been provided at Kesinga
by Link Exp. (Raipur-Vizag.), Hirakhand Exp., and Bokaro Madras Exp.

[Kesinga is one stn. away from Titlagarh towards Vizianagaram]

New Corridor between China and Europe

The recently commissioned 480 km. line from Alataw Pass to Urumqi in western
China opens up a new alternate route between the Chinese and Soviet Railways,
and in doing so provides an additional transport corridor for freight
exchanges between China and Europe bypassing the Trans Siberian Railway.
The link will enable traffic to flow along 10,000 km. of railway between
Rotterdam and the port of Lianyungang in eastern China.



From: Ajai Banerji <

Subject: Railway Budget

Date: 19 Jul 1991 08:22:00 -0500

Here is a brief report which appeared in India West. I will post more
details when the Times of India gets here.
Surplus of 584 crores projected.
10% hike in freight, parcels and luggage charges (except for certain
essential commodities).
20% increase in upper class fares upto 800 km, 15 km for these fares
above 800 km.
Special fares for some trains on trunk routes to be increased(must be
Rajdhani and Shatabdi).
Increase in 2nd class ordinary fares, with a maximum of Rs 5 for
distances above 400 km.
Nothing was mentioned about new programs or trains.
Also, it may be noted that both the railway minister (Jaffar Sherif) and
the minister for state (Mallikarjuna) are from the South-thus one can
expect improvements in services to the South.

From: jis <

Subject: Runaway Train in India

Date: 23 Jul 1991 14:44:00 -0500

Thought this article excerpted from rec.railroad may be of interest to
the readers of this list:

'Read in the local paper yesterday that:

"An unmanned train (in India) sped through 33 stations before an illiterate
herdsman traveling in a cattle car crawled on the roofs of other rail
cars to reach the engine and halt it, a news report stated.

Mohammad Anwar 'desperately fiddled with all the knobs and buttons (in the
driver's cabin) and the train finally obeyed when he touched a green button
at Karengi,' the Press Trust of India reported.

The accident occurred Friday after the engineer and his assistant
stopped at Matlabpur station and clambered down to check a broked pipe
on the engine's body. Matlabpur is 125 miles east of New Delhi.

Suddenly, the train started moving, and the two men watched as it gathered
speed and disappeared from sight, Press Trust reported."

Jishnu Mukerji

From: Dheeraj Sanghi <>

Subject: Highlights from Indian Railways Feb 92 issue

Date: 24 Jul 1991 03:09:00 -0500

Highlights of Feb. '91 issue of Indian Railways.

Editorial: Oil crisis has shown necessity to conserve. Railways are the
most efficient means of transportation. So invest more in Rlys.

article by Rly Minister, Janeshwar Mishra: railways going hi-tech in
every area. Nothing new in the article.

Computerized reservation starts in Bhuvaneshwar (Jan 15) and Patna (Jan 26).
Six more stations, Guwahati, Jaipur, Gorakhpur, Trivandrum, Jammu and
Cuttack to have the facility by Mar. 91.

First BG link in post-independence Himachal between Una and Nangal opened.

Many articles on energy conservation by Railways.

Reduction of train services during Gulf War.

history of Bombay-Pune train service.

Double discharge platforms at Bombay VT. The remodelled VT suburban station
now has 7 tracks with platforms on either side. This should allow quick
discharge of passengers at VT station.

April 1991 issue will be devoted to Visit India Year.

(This issue was one of the most boring issue that I have read so far.
Nothing exciting happening or what.)


From: Ajai Banerji <


Date: 25 Jul 1991 15:17:00 -0500

Literature on the Indian Railways

With our forthcoming "conference" it may be a good
time to review the various sources of published
information about the Indian Railways.
It is an unfortunate truth that, by and large, it
is easier to get economic information about India
in the US rather than in India. The railways are no
All of you would be familiar with the different
types of timetables. Other official publications
include the magazine "Indian Railways", and the
annual reports (which are available in some US
university libraries). The annual reports are useful
if you want to know when a certain line was constructed
or when a certain train was started. If you are really
into ancient history, the annual reports from 1859 onwards
are available in microfiche in the British parliamentary
papers, which all major university libraries have.
Then there is the British journal Railway Gazette which
generally has a few news items about India every month.
It used to give very detailed coverage of IR in pre-
independence days; for instance, there was a large special
issue in 1929 with many pictures of the Indian railways
at that time.
Coming to books, one has to try various subject headings
in the computer retrieval systems. Try "Railroads, India"
or "India,Railroads" and other permutations. If your library
has the LC system, it is worth searching the stacks with call
numbers from HE 3290 to 3300, also TF 100 to 120. Sometimes
books may be available here but not listed in the computer.
If you have the Dewey system, the books on Indian railways
will generally appear under 385.****, lumped with general
books on railways. Most general books on railways (particularly
by British authors) will generally have some mention of India.
It is generally advisable to check the shelves, as you never
know what you may find. For instance, the Stanford libraries
yielded the Bradshaws of 1934 and 1942. The U of Rochester
library revealed the annual report of 1931 which had details
of the inauguration of the GT express (which then ran between
Mangalore and Peshawar).
I will next come to some specific books which IRFCA readers
may find interesting.

From: vijayb <

Subject: This and That!

Date: 26 Jul 1991 08:09:00 -0500

Hi Folks,

Get-together (Last Call!)
First, a reminder to all of you that the get-together is scheduled for
Aug. 3-4 at Aravind's place (Holmdel, New Jersey), the directions to which were
posted about a week back. At present, six of us are involved in the
"arrangements". Hopefully, Chitta can make it that week-end, which will then
take the total to seven. Lot's of railway items to be enjoyed and assimilated
: photos, pamphlets, articles, books, videos, time-tables,..... It's a chance
of a lifetime. Maybe this'll convince a few more of you, at least, some of the
East Coasters.

Conway Scenic Railroad [info. from pamphlets]
I had been meaning to post this for a while. This was during my trip to
White Mountains, New Hampshire, about a month back. We got a chance to ride
the C.S. railroad. This is part of the Conway Branch, which connected the
Conways with Boston's North Station. Freight trains were very important
during the early part of the century, when logs and lumber from the vast timber
stands in the mountains around the Conways were shipped by rail. In the late
1930s, there was the excitement of the sleek and silvery diesel streamliner
train. Passenger service between Boston and North Conway ended in 1961.
The depot was closed and boarded up. By late 1972, the freight service, too,
had been shut down. In 1974, the Conway scenic Railroad bought several miles
of the Conway branch and began operation on Aug. 4th of that year.

We paid $8 each, to experience a thrilling one hour ride in the "Gertrude
Emma", a Pullman Parlor-Observation Car. Instead of contending to sit inside
the coach amidst the luxurious setting, we stood on the observation platform
at the end of the car, a mobile balcony of sorts. Here I was at the very end
of the train, surrounded by lush green country-fields with mountains in the
distance, watching the glistening steel raid threads merge into oblivion.
Truly a sight for sore eyes..............
I promise to get some photos next week-end.

IR Electrification (speculations)
Here's an attempt to portray a post-electrification scenario, if the various
planned projects are faithfully completed. Let's look at a few of these, one
by one.
Nagpur-Itarsi:- Should be operational by now. All North-South trains (.....-
Bhopal-Itarsi-Amla-Nagpur-....) would be elec. hauled. The
Tamilnadu Exp. and AP exp. would no longer halt at Itarsi. The Ganga Kaveri
Exp., Madras-Patna exp., and the Tirpuati-Varanasi exp. would be elec. hauled
till Itarsi instead of Kazipet.

Bhusaval-Itarsi:- Is probably operational by now. Trains such as the Punjab
Mail, Jhelum Exp., Bombay-Gorakhpur exp., Karnakata exp.,
Dadar-Amritsar Exp., Pushpak Exp., Lashkar exp., would be elec. hauled while
passing Itarsi (no loco. changeovers). In fact, the Jhelum exp. and
Karnataka exp. might change locos. at Manmad, itself. Trains employing the
Bhusaval-Itarsi-Jabalpur route would change to diesel at Itarsi.
The Bhusaval bypass should also have been electrified for the convenience of
freight trains.

Bhusaval-Nagpur-Durg:- All East-West trains via Nagpur would be elec. hauled.
Would eliminate loco. changovers at Bhusaval and Durg,
except for the Navjeevan exp. and Ahmedabad-Howrah exp. which would be diesel
hauled from Ahmedabad and change locos. at Bhusaval.

Pune-Renigunta:- I hope they double the Daund-Gulbarga, and Wadi-Guntakal
sections in parallel. Pune would be the stn. for AC-DC loco.
changeovers, unless WCAMs are introduced in this section. The Rayalaseema
exp. and Hyderabad-Bangalore exp. would most probably go via Wadi instead of
Wadi Chord, so that they can be elec. hauled between Wadi and Gooty.
Bangalore bound trains would change to diesel at Gooty, which has a loco. shed.
The Nagpur-Kolhapur Maharashtra exp. and the Jhelum exp. might continue to run
diesels in the short Pune-Daund stretch.

More speculations later.


From: Sridhar Venkataraman <

Subject: Re: This and That!

Date: 26 Jul 1991 04:42:00 -0500

About the Nagpur-Itarsi post-electrification scenario I would still
assume that TN will stop at Itarsi since the engine change and the food
stop used to happen at Itarsi during the past 1/1.5 yr(s) or so. If
TN is speeded up I would think that since TN's arrival in New Delhi or
its departure from New Delhi cannot be changed due to the tremendous
traffic constraints in New Delhi, Amla could be the food stop towards
New Delhi and Itarsi could be the food stop the other way.

Sridhar Venkataraman
UUCP : ..!uunet!mimsy!oddjob!noao!enuxva!sridhar
US MAIL : 1130 E.Orange #310
Tempe AZ 85281.
PHONE : (602) 921-9926

From: vijayb <

Subject: Catering!

Date: 29 Jul 1991 14:28:00 -0500

Hi Folks,

V. Sridhar writes:
>About the Nagpur-Itarsi post-electrification scenario I would still
>assume that TN will stop at Itarsi since the engine change and the food
>stop used to happen at Itarsi during the past 1/1.5 yr(s) or so. If
>TN is speeded up I would think that since TN's arrival in New Delhi or
>its departure from New Delhi cannot be changed due to the tremendous
>traffic constraints in New Delhi, Amla could be the food stop towards
>New Delhi and Itarsi could be the food stop the other way.

This brings me to an important question concerning the selection of
catering halts. Is this strongly dependent on what time of the day
the train arrives at that station, or just on the fact that the stn.
has the proper facilities? Since the Pantry Car is equipped to keep
food warm (or warm it up, if necessary), the trays could be loaded at
any time of the day, as long as there is space available. If this is
true, then one wouldn't need special catering halts at all, so I might
be mistaken. A few more questions:
-Is food for the whole day loaded at one stop, or do they distribute it
across stations?
-Do the empty trays (after the "hogging") need to be returned to the
originating stn. itself, or tray pooling between stns. is allowed?

Let's discuss the scenario for the Tamilnadu and GT exp. As far as
I know, Amla and Ghoradongri handle catering for the GT exp.
For example, the Up GT exp. gets the trays at Amla, which are
received at Ghoradongri and taken back to Amla (probably by another
Earlier, the TN exp. used to be a one-night train leaving
N.Delhi/Madras in the morning. Then Amla used to serve as a
catering/military halt for the Dn. train. My guess is, the Up train
loaded its trays at Balharshah.

Since the TN exp. now leaves N.Delhi/Madras in the night, things
might be different. In fact, the TN exp. closely follows the GT exp.
at least in the latter half of the journey (in either direction). So,
it is possible that Amla might have been re-introduced as a catering
halt. I am not sure about Itarsi though.