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History of Railways in Kerala


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Rail transport began in Kerala at Malabar. On March 12,1861,Kerala's first train ,built by the Madras Railway Company ,chugged along the Beppur - Tirur line (30.6km). Construction of a railway line started in Kochi province in 1889. In 1902 ,the Madras Railway Company completed work on a narrow gauge railway-line that connected Shoranur and Ernakulam (106.06 km). The line was converted into broad gauge between 1930 and 1935 as part of development of Cochin Port

Train service began in Travancore on November 26,1904,with the completion of the Chengotta -Punalur meter gauge line. On November 4,1931,the Thiruvananthapuram Central Railway Station was launched . In 1956 during the formation of Kerala ,the total length of railway line in the State was 745 km.Ernakulam and Kollam were not connected by rail then. The Ernakulam -Kottayam and Kottayam -Kollam railway lines were completed in 1956 and 1958 respectively. In December 1971,a Rs. 13.59 -crore project to convert the Thiruvananthapuram -Ernakulam line (220 km) from metre gauge to broad gauge was sanctioned. The work was completed in 1976

The Railways opened the Thiruvananthapuram-Kanyakumari broad gague line (31 km in Kerala ) in 1979. The Ernakulam -Alappuzha broad gague line and the Alappuzha -Kanyakumari line (943 km) were completed in 1989 and 1992 respectively . The Madras -Ernakulam (via Shoranur ; 180 km in Kerala ) stretch got a double track in 1986

The thrissur -Guruvayur broad gague line (21 km) was laid in 1994. The Kayamkulam -Kollam (41 km) and Kollam -Thiruvananthapuram (65 km) stretch got double tracks in 1996 and 2000 respectively . Doubling of Shoranur -Mangalapuram line (313 km) is in progress. The Thrissur -Ernakulam line was electrified in 2002. The Southern Railway,headquartered in Chennai, Controls rail transport in Kerala . The Current length of railway line in Kerala is 1,148 kms (of which 111.4 km is metre gauge) . The total length of railway line under the Thriruvananthapuram division is 488.60 km and that under Palakkad division 549 kms


Courtesy : The Hindu