The Jammu–Srinagar–Baramulla railway line is a railway track being laid to connect the Kashmir Valley in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir with Jammu railway station and thence to the rest of the country. The 356 km railway track begins at Jammu and ends at Baramulla. It is in the jurisdiction of the Firozpur railway division of Indian Railways' Northern zone.
Construction of the route faced natural challenges including major earthquake zones, extreme temperatures and inhospitable terrain. The project has had a long and chequered history, and serious progress was made only after it was declared a National Project of India in 2002. Although its scheduled completion date was 15 August 2007, unforeseen complications have pushed back the date several times. The sections from Jammu to Katra and Banihal to Baramulla have been built and are operational. The track from Katra to Banihal is to be completed by 2020.
|Jammu–Srinagar–Baramulla railway line|
Map of the railway line
|Locale||Jammu and Kashmir|
|Operator(s)||Northern Railway zone|
|Line length||356 km|
|Number of tracks||1|
|Track gauge||1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge|
|Highest elevation||327–1,590 m (1,073–5,217 ft)|
The railway line is divided into four sections:
Leg 0 has been operational since 2005.
Leg 1 has been operational since July 2014. The leg had missed opening dates in the past, including December 2005, December 2006 and May 2009. Work on the section, suspended for two years due to a partial tunnel collapse, resumed in September 2009. Although the section was planned to open by 2 February 2014, passenger service was delayed due to Commission of Railway Safety concerns about one bridge and tunnel. The route includes seven tunnels and 30 bridges. The section was dedicated to the nation on 4 July 2014 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Leg 2, running 148 km from Katra to Banihal is under construction, may be completed in 2021. Construction on the leg has been beset by technical difficulties with alignment and disputes with contractors, and was originally expected to be finished in 2017–18. This is the line's most difficult section of the rail line, with 62 bridges and a number of tunnels totalling 10 km out of total 129 km. It requires 262 km of access roads connecting 147,000 people in 73 villages; 160 km, connecting 29 villages, is completed. In July 2008, work on part of the Katra-Banihal section was suspended for a possible realignment. The alternative alignment, proposed by the railway, reduced the track length from 126 km to 67 km. A committee appointed by the Railway Board recommended abandoning 93 km of the previously-approved alignment. On 12 November 2014, the Delhi High Court directed the central government to appoint a committee to review the 126 km-long section.
An 18 km stretch of Leg 2, between Quazigund and Banihal, was authorised on 26 June 2013. The stretch includes the 11.215-km (7-mile) Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel, also known as the Banihal railway tunnel. India's longest rail tunnel, it is 8.4 m wide and 7.39 m high. The tunnel includes a 3 m-wide service road for maintenance and emergency use. Its average elevation, 1760 m, is 440 m below the existing road tunnel.
The tunnel facilitates transportation during winter (when inclement weather closes the Srinagar-Jammu highway), and halves the distance between Quazigund and Banihal (35 km by road and 17.5 km by train). The Banihal railway station is 1,702 m (5,584 ft) above mean sea level, and trains run from Banihal to Qazigund through the tunnel. The 5 km Banganga section was expected to be operational before the completion date of 2017–18 for the entire project.
Status update of under construction 148 km route from Katra to Banihal.
Leg 3 has been operational since October 2009. The line from Baramulla to Banihal, across the Pir Panjal Range, is 130 km long. Since the 25 km-long Udhampur-Katra section was commissioned in October 2013, only the 148 km Katra-Banihal section of Leg 2 remains to be constructed. Until the Katra-Laole section of railway is finished by 2020, travel from Jammu Tawi (or Udhampur) to Banihal by road and from Banihal to Srinagar by rail is possible.
The line may be the most difficult rail project undertaken on the Indian subcontinent. The young Himalayas are geologically surprising and problematic. The track's alignment presents one of the greatest railway engineering challenges ever faced; only Tibet's Qingzang Railway, completed in 2006 across permafrost and climbing to over 5,000 m (16,000 ft) above sea level, is comparable. Although the Indian temperatures are less severe, the region experiences harsh winters with heavy snowfall. In the Pir Panjal Range, most peaks exceed 15,000 ft (4,600 m) in height.
The route includes many bridges, viaducts and tunnels. The railway is expected to cross over 750 bridges and pass through over 100 km (62 mi) of tunnels, the longest of which is 11,215 m (6.969 mi). Engineering challenges include crossing the Chenab River river on a 1,315-metre-long (4,314 ft) bridge 359 m (1,178 ft) above the riverbed and crossing the Anji Khad on a 657-metre-long (2,156 ft) bridge 186 m (610 ft) above the riverbed. The Chenab Bridge will be the highest railway structure of its kind in the world, 35 metres (115 ft) higher than the top of the Eiffel Tower. Both bridges will be simple. Weathering steel is planned for an environmentally-friendly appearance and to eliminate the need for painting. The design and structure is similar to West Virginia's New River Gorge Bridge. The project is managed by the Konkan Railway Corporation. Completion was scheduled for 2012 (four years after the first isolated section of the route was opened for local passenger service), and it requires 26,000 tonnes of steel.
All tunnels are built with the New Austrian tunnelling method, and a number of challenges have been encountered while tunnelling through the geologically-young, unstable Sivalik Hills. In particular, water entered the Udhampur-to-Katra section; this required drastic solutions with steel arches and several feet of shotcrete.
Although the rail line is being built through a mountainous region, a one-percent ruling gradient has been set to provide a safe, smooth, reliable journey. Bank engines will not be required, making the journey quicker and smoother. It will use 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) Indian broad gauge continuous welded rail laid on concrete sleepers, with a minimum curve radius of 676 m. The maximum speed will be 100 kilometres per hour (62 mph). Provision for future doubling will be made on major bridges. Provisions for future electrification will also be made, although the rail line will use diesel locomotives initially; the region is presently electricity-scarce. There will be 30 stations on the route, initially served by 10–12 trains per day.
Passenger service will be provided by high-power diesel multiple units and heated, air-conditioned coaches have wide windows, sliding doors and reclining seats. The driver's cabin has a heating and defogging unit, and is fitted with a one-piece glass window for a wider view. A snow-cutting cattle guard is attached to the front of the train to clear snow from the tracks during winter. Due to the valley's cold climate, the 1,400-horsepower diesel engine has a heating system for quick, trouble-free starts. Coaches have a public-information system (display and announcements) and a pneumatic suspension for riding comfort. There is a compartment for the physically disabled, with wider doors.
Freight rolling stock for the route will come from the existing national fleet. Freight service (grain and petroleum products) will run between the 10–12 daily passenger trains. Maintenance will be done at the Badgam workshop, north of Srinagar. Three-aspect colour-light signalling is being installed on the route for safety, and GSM-R equipment may be installed in the future to improve its quality.
Indian Railways is in charge of the 25-kilometre (16 mi) Udhampur-Katra section. The subsidiary Konkan Railway Corporation is in charge of the 90-kilometre (56 mi) Katra-Laole section. This is arguably the line's most difficult portion, with over 92 percent tunnels or bridges—12 kilometres (7.5 mi) of bridges and 72 kilometres (45 mi) of tunnels. Ircon International, a public-sector company, is in charge of the 175-kilometre (109 mi) Dharam-Qazigund-Baramulla section. One hundred thirty-eight kilometres of the line, including the valley and the Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel, is operational. Hindustan Construction Company built the 11,215 m (6.969 mi) Pir Panjal tunnel through the range for about US$120 million. Afcons Infrastructure Limited and South Korea's Ultra Engineering will design and build the Chenab Bridge for $130 million. Gammon India and South Africa's Archirodon Construction will build the Anji Khad Bridge for $100 million.
The rail line's security has been a major concern as it passes through areas with political unrest. Closed-circuit television cameras at major bridges, tunnels and stations are planned, and all major bridges and tunnels are illuminated.
Anantnag railway station is a railway station on the Northern railway network. It is the headquarters of Anantnag division of Northern Railway zone .Anji Khad Bridge
The Anji Khad bridge is a cable-stayed bridge proposed to connect Katra and Reasi Section of Jammu–Baramulla line. Earlier, an arch bridge similar to the Chenab Bridge was proposed. Due to concerns regarding the geological stability of the region, the plan was abandoned.Banihal railway station
Banihal railway station (station code: BAHL), a part of Jammu–Baramulla line, is situated in notified area of Banihal in Ramban district, Jammu and Kashmir. It was commissioned on 26 June 2013 and passenger trains run from Banihal to Qazigund. The station was inaugurated by former prime minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi on the same day at 2.22 pm. They enjoyed the 12-minute ride in train through Pir panjal tunnel up to Qazigund with 100 students, mostly girls, of the Banihal Higher Secondary School, and made the 17.8-km ride back to Banihal, passing through the tunnel again, the second longest in Asia.Baramulla railway station
Baramulla railway station is situated in notified area of Baramulla. It is the first station of 130 km long railway line which connects Kashmir Valley with Banihal.Bijbehara railway station
Bijbehara railway station is a railway station on the Northern railway network in Anantnag, Jammu and Kashmir. It is the twelfth station on the railway line about 93 km from Baramulla railway station. It is 3 km away from the main town.Budgam railway station
Budgam Railway Station is a station on Northern Railway Network of Indian Railways. This station is the headquarter of Jammu–Baramulla line network. It is located in ompora town of Budgam district nearly 2.5 km from main town Budgam.Jammu Tawi railway station
Jammu Tawi (station code: JAT) is a railway station in Jammu city in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.Kakapora railway station
Kakapora railway station is the railway station on Northern Railway Network Zone of Indian Railways. It is one of the four stations in Pulwama district, others being Awantipora railway station, Pampore railway station and Panchgam railway station respectively.Mountain railways of India
The mountain railways of India are the railway lines that were built in the mountains of India. Three of them, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, the Nilgiri Mountain Railway, and the Kalka–Shimla Railway, are collectively designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the name Mountain Railways of India. The fourth railway, the Matheran Hill Railway, is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. All four are narrow-gauge railways, and the Nilgiri Mountain Railway is also the only rack railway in India.
Some mountain railways such as the Lumding–Badarpur section have been converted to 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge, which is the nationwide standard, while some railways such as the Kangra Valley Railway are in the process of being converted to broad gauge. Some mountain railways, such as the Jammu–Baramulla line, are currently under construction, and others are in the planning stage, such as the Bilaspur–Manali–Leh line, the Jammu–Poonch line, the Srinagar–Kargil–Leh line, and the Chota Char Dham Railway. All the mountain railways constructed in recent times use 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge.Pampore railway station
Pampore railway station is the railway station on Jammu–Baramulla line in Indian administered Jammu and Kashmir. It is one of the four stations in Pulwama district, the others being Awantipora railway station, Kakapora railway station and Panchgam railway station respectively.Pattan railway station
Pattan railway station is the station on Northern railway network zone of Indian Railways.Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel
The Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel or Banihal railway tunnel is an 11.215 km (7 mile) railway tunnel located in Pir Panjal Range of middle Himalayas in Jammu and Kashmir, India, north of Banihal town. It is a part of the Jammu–Baramulla line.
The north portal of the railway tunnel is at 33.5617942°N 75.1988626°E / 33.5617942; 75.1988626 and its south portal is at 33.463203°N 75.193992°E / 33.463203; 75.193992.Sadura railway station
Sadura Railway Station is a railway station on the Northern railway network of India. It is the headquarters of Anantnag division of Northern Railway zone.Sangaldan Tunnel
The Sangaldan Railway Tunnel is a 7.1 km (4.4 mile) railway tunnel between Katra-Banihal section of Jammu–Baramulla line located to the north of Sangaldan town of middle Himalayas in Jammu and Kashmir, India near Ramban district. The tunnel was completed on 4 December 2010.Sangaldan railway station
Sangaldan railway station is a proposed railway station in Ramban district, Jammu and Kashmir. Its code is SNGDN. It will serve Sangaldan city. The station proposal includes two platforms. The station lies on Banihal - Katra rail line. The Work on this rail line is expected to be finished year 2020. The station in surrounded by many of long tunnels of Jammu–Baramulla line.Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra railway station
Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra railway station (station code: SVDK) is a train station on the Jammu Udhampur Srinagar Baramulla Railway Link in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It belongs to the Firozpur Division of Northern Railway zone in Jammu and Kashmir. It serves Katra town and the Sri Mata Vaishno Devi Temple.Sopore railway station
Sopore railway station, also known as Amargrah railway station, lies on Northern Railway Network Zone of Indian Railways.Srinagar railway station
Srinagar railway station or Nowgam railway station is a railway station of the city of Srinagar in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.
The station is part of the Jammu–Baramulla line, which once completed, will connect the city to the Rail network of India. Currently,services are to Baramulla and Banihal.The railway line once fully completed is expected to increase tourism and travel to the Kashmir Valley. The work of last leg Chenab Bridge is in final stages and is expected to be completed by 2017.
The station is also planned to be part of a second railway line, the Srinagar–Kargil–Leh line.Udhampur railway station
Udhampur railway station is situated in municipal committee of Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir, India. The average elevation of the station is 660.054 metres (2,165.53 ft) above mean sea level. The rail distance between UHP and JAT is 53 km (33 mi).
|Main lines and|
|Districts and divisions|
Railways in Northern India
|Branch lines/ sections|
|Urban and suburban|