The truth is Indian Railways is regarded to be among the most organized, wide spread rail networks and also the busiest one in the world. It is Central Government that owns it and administered by Ministry of Railways.
Facts about Indian Railways
- The first passenger services started from 16th April, 1853 with Bombay being connected with Thane. But it spread by about 9000 miles by end of 1880. A cartoon elephant, nicknamed ‘Bholu’ has been selected by Railways as its mascot elegantly clothed in white and blue like that of train guard having flag in hand.
- Railway Corporation is said to have its auxiliary wing, Tourism and Catering, which controls the hospitality, catering, luxury and budget, as well as online based reservation services.
- The office website is developed to cater online reservations and is found to be operational for about 18 hours every day. It undergoes servicing and maintenance activities from midnight – early morning and is closed for reservations, status verifications and customer support
Several user friendly and comprehensible services are offered by Indian Railways. Such services are designed for taking off some load from railway reservation and ticketing department across the country. It is now possible to perform train ticket booking and checking of status online, without having to visit the ticket booking centre at the station or to catch any agent who may charge very high rates. The Railways does facilitate convenient and comfortable booking, helps to save energy and time of both passengers and the corporation.
- A specialized service has been designed for allowing urgent booking across all classes with the exception of Executive Class and First AC, named ‘Tatkal Scheme’. Tatkal e-ticket service can be found on selected trains, with reservations permitted early by two days until chart preparation.
- Premium and budgeted tour packages are offered by Railways all over the country meant for both foreign and domestic tourists. Such tour packages have been categorized under ‘Bharat Darshan’ plan. The packages include tourism and various exciting destinations. Tourism trains does help to introduce re-live and get to see, feel and experience the real India, its culture, diversity and heritage.
- World Heritage Site list is maintained by International World Heritage program. Indian Railways takes the pleasure to process world heritage sites like:
- Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), Mumbai: It is regarded to be a railway station of historical importance, called formerly as Bombay VT or Victoria Terminus.
- Darjeeling Himalayan Railway: It is the famous toy train, a popular world heritage site that runs on narrow gauge to Darjeeling from Siliguri station, West Bengal.
- Kalka – Shimla Mountain Railway: This significant railway line stretches about 96.6km and is the latest entrant into the World Heritage Site list.
- Nilgiri Mountain Railway: It is among the country’s oldest mountain railways, included in the list.
- Luxury and heritage trains: Besides travel and passenger services, Indian Railways does present both domestic and foreign tourists with special heritage / luxury and tourist trains like Royal Orient Express, Palace on Wheels, Golden Chariot, Royal Rajasthan on Wheels, Deccan Odyssey, Mahaparivivan Special Train, Heritage of Wheels and the Fairy Queen.
The above are few of the interesting facts about Indian Railways.