India’s first passenger train operated in Mumbai between Bori Bunder and Thane

Indian Railways are the most extensive railway networks across the globe and today on India Rail Transport Day, we will be highlighting some of the interesting facts that are sure to amaze you.

1. The country’s first official train started its journey on April 16 and traveled a distance of 34 km in Mumbai between Bori Bunder and Thane. Indian Railways is one of the largest logistics and transportation networks in the world and is an important national asset of India, spanning the length and breadth of the entire country.

2. The Fairy Queen in India was accredited by the Guinness Book of World Records in 1998 to be the oldest running steam locomotive.

3. The country’s railways are used by 22.5 million passengers daily. The annual figure of the same is a staggering 8.224 billion passengers, which far exceeds the entire population of the world.

4. The total length of the Indian Railway network is 66,030 km, which is more than the entire circumference of our planet.

5. Another interesting fact about Indian Railways is that while the first official run was recorded in April, the country’s first train moved its wheels in December 1851 at Roorkee.

6. Indian Railways connect all the remote corners of the country. The system manages 7137 positions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The station with the longest name is WR Venkatanarasimharjuvariipeta which is nestled on the Arakkonam-Renigunta section of the Southern Railway, while Ib, the station with the shortest name is located on the main Howrah-Nagpur line near Jharsuguda.

7. India at the time of independence had 42 independent railway systems and in 1951 they were nationalized and separated into six different railway zones. The country currently has 69 divisions and 16 zones.

8. Indian Railways employs over 1.3 million employees and is ranked the eighth largest employer in the world according to data released in 2015.

9. India’s oldest train, Vivek Express, covers a distance of 4273 km from Dibrugarh, Assam to Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu in less than four days.

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Jose P. Rogers