Coimbatore–Shoranur line

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Coimbatore - Shoranur line
LocaleTamil Nadu and Kerala
TerminiCoimbatore Junction (CBE)
Shoranur Junction (SRR)
Opened1861; 158 years ago (1861)
OwnerIndian Railway
Operator(s)Southern Railway zone
Rolling stockWDM-2, WDM-3A, WDM-3D, WDG-3A and WDG-4 diesel locos; and WAG-7 and WAP-4 electric locos.
Track lengthMain line: 88 km (55 mi)
Coimbatore-Mettupalayam 54 km (34 mi)
Track gauge1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in)
Operating speed130 kilometres per hour (81 mph)
Highest elevationCoimbatore 411 metres (1,348 ft)
Shoranur 26 metres (85 ft)
Palakkad 84 metres (276 ft)

The Coimbatore - Shoranur line connects Coimbatore in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and Shoranur in Kerala. There is a branch line PothanurCoimbatoreMettupalayam and Mettupalayam to Udhagamandalam via Nilgiri Mountain Railway. This network links the railway network in Kerala to the network in Tamil Nadu via the Palakkad Gap.


The first train service in southern India and the third in India was operated by Madras Railway from Royapuram to Wallajah Road in 1856. Madras Railway extended its trunk route to Kozhikode in 1861.[1] The Podanur–Mettuapalayam line was opened to traffic in 1873. The UNESCO heritage track, Nilgiri Mountain Railway, a metre gauge railway was opened in two stages. The Mettupalayam-Coonoor section was opened in 1899 and it was extended up to Udhagamandalam (Ooty) in 1908.[2][3]


Palghat Gap is a low mountain pass in the Western Ghats between Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu and Palakkad in Kerala. It has an average elevation of 140 metres (460 ft) with a width of 30 kilometres (19 mi) and the line passes through the Palghat gap, which is the only connection across the Western Ghats between Tamil Nadu and Kerala.[4]


The mainline was electrified in stages. The Coimbatore–Waylar sector was electrified in 1995–96, and the Waylar–Shoranur in 1996-97.[5] The Coimbatore-Mettupalayam sector was electrified in 2014-15.[6]

Speed limit[edit]

The Coimbatore–Shoranur line is classified as a "Group B" line which can take speeds up to 130 km/h.[7]

Loco sheds[edit]

Trains running on the line use locos from Erode loco shed which holds WDM-2, WDM-3A, WDM-3D, WDG-3A, WDG-4, WAG-7 and WAP-4 locos. It is home to the largest fleet of WAP-4 locos on Indian Railways.[8]

Passenger movement[edit]

Coimbatore and Palakkad, on this line, are amongst the top hundred booking stations of Indian Railway.[9]


  1. ^ "IR History – Early days". 1832–1869. IRFCA. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  2. ^ "Mettupalam-Udhagamandalam (Ooty) Train". india invites. Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  3. ^ "Mettuapalayam" (PDF). Indian Railways. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 January 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  4. ^ "Britannica Encyclopedia". Retrieved 8 March 2015.
  5. ^ "History of Electrification". IRFCA. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  6. ^ Coimbatore-Mettupalayam electric train service commences
  7. ^ "Chapter II : The Maintenance of Permanent Way". Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  8. ^ "Sheds and Workshops". IRFCA. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  9. ^ "Indian Railways Passenger Reservation Enquiry". Availability in trains for Top 100 Booking Stations of Indian Railways. IRFCA. Archived from the original on 10 May 2014. Retrieved 23 December 2013.

External links[edit]