North Western State Railway

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North Western State Railway
Industry Railways
Predecessor Scinde, Punjab & Delhi Railway
Indus Valley State Railway
Punjab Northern State Railway
Sind–Sagar Railway
Sind–Pishin State Railway
Kandahar State Railway
Successors Pakistan Western Railways
Eastern Punjab Railway[1]
Founded 1886
Defunct 1947
Headquarters Karachi, Sind, British Raj
Area served
Punjab
Sind
Northwest Frontier Province
Baluchistan
Services Rail transport

The North Western State Railway (reporting mark NWR) was formed in January 1886 from the merger of the Scinde, Punjab & Delhi Railway, the Indus Valley State Railway, the Punjab Northern State Railway, the eastern section of the Sind–Sagar Railway and the southern section of the Sind–Pishin State Railway and the Kandahar State Railway.[2]

History[edit]

Fortified North Western State Railway bridge over the Indus at Attock, 1895

The military and strategic concerns for securing the border with Afghanistan were such that, Francis Langford O'Callaghan (who was posted from the state railways as engineer-in-chief) was called upon for a number of demanding railway projects, surveys and constructions in the Northwest Frontier.[3] What initially started off as military and strategic railway project, ended up becoming part of the North Western State Railway network upon its formation in 1886. The Bolan Pass railway was completed in 1886 and in 1887 the Khawaja Amran Railway Survey included the Khojak Tunnel and the Chaman Extension Railway.[4] The Khojak Tunnel opened in 1891 and the railway reached Chaman near the Afghan border. By 1905, it was the longest railway under one administration and the strategic railway of the entire Northwest frontier. In 1947, much of the North Western State Railway fell in Pakistan territory domain became part of the Pakistan Western Railways, while railways in Indian territory became incorporated into the Eastern Punjab Railway.[5]

Mergers[edit]

The North Western State Railway network was formed by merging several major and minor railways together. These included:

Major railways absorbed[edit]

Minor railways absorbed[edit]

In addition to the main line sections the following are significant:

Construction[edit]

Extensions[edit]

Lines[edit]

Amritsar–Patti Railway[edit]

The Amritsar Patti Railway was a private railway incorporated on 12 April 1905. The 27 miles (43 kilometers) broad gauge from Amritsar to Patti opened in 1906 and worked with the North Western Railway (NWR). In 1910, the line was extended to Kasur bringing the line length to 54 miles (86 kilometers).[6]

Bahawalnagar–Fort Abbas Railway[edit]

The Bahawalnagar-Fort Abbas Railway was a Darbar line financed by the Princely Bahawalpur State. The line opened in 1928 as part of the North Western State Railway network.[7]

Dandot Light Railway[edit]

The Dandot Light Railway, opened 1905. Short Narrow Gauge(NG) colliary Branch, worked by NWR

Jacobabad–Kashmore Railway[edit]

Khanpur–Chachran Railway[edit]

  • Khanpur-Chachran Railway, opened 1911. Owned by Bahawalpur Darbar; worked by NWR; also with Bahawalnagar-Fort Abbas Railway

Khyber Pass Railway[edit]

Main article: Khyber Pass Railway

The Khyber Pass Railway opened in 1925 as a strategic line to Afghanistan via Khyber Pass.

Larkana–Jacobabad (Sind) Light Railway[edit]

Mandra–Bhaun Railway[edit]

Nowshera–Durgai Railway[edit]

Surveyed railways[edit]

  • Bannu Railway Survey. Under Survey in 1909 (ref 1909 India List) by NWR on behalf of Government of India(GoI), but no evidence that it was constructed

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Directory of Railway Officials & Yearbook. Tothill Press. 1954. p. 114. It comprises the whole of the former North-Western system of British India except the lines in the south-eastern Punjab, now the Eastern Punjab Railway of India. 
  2. ^ " Administration Report on the Railways in India – corrected up to 31st March 1918"; Superintendent of Government Printing, Calcutta; page 106; Retrieved 20 Dec 2015
  3. ^ Institution of Civil Engineers "Biographical Dictionary of Civil Engineers in Great Britain and Ireland - O'Callaghan, Francis Langford "; Retrieved on 9 Jul 2016
  4. ^ "The Imperial Gazetteer of India" v. 21, p. 14.; Retrieved on 13 Jul 2016
  5. ^ Reed, Sir Stanley (1949). The Times of India Directory and Year Book. Times of India Press. Retrieved 26 November 2016. On that day the Indian portion of tile North-Western was constituted into Eastern Punjab Railway, and the parts of the Bengal- Assam in the province of Assam were formed Into Assam Railway. 
  6. ^ " Administration Report on the Railways in India – corrected up to 31st March 1918"; Superintendent of Government Printing, Calcutta; page 110; Retrieved 16 Feb 2016
  7. ^ Wikipedia "Abandoned and dismantled railway lines in Pakistan"; Retrieved 29 Jan 2016

External links[edit]


  1. ^ “National Archives” ”; Retrieved 30 May 2016