Project Unigauge

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Comparison of different gauges in India with standard gauge

Project Unigauge, started in 1991, is an ongoing exercise by Indian Railways to convert almost all of the rail gauges in India to 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge.

Background[edit]

Narrow-gauge railways were built in India in early years as they cost less to build as they are usually lighter in construction, used smaller cars and locomotives (smaller loading gauge), as well as smaller bridges, smaller tunnels (smaller structure gauge) and tighter curves. Narrow gauge was thus used in mountainous terrain, where the savings in civil engineering work could be substantial. It was also used in sparsely populated areas where the potential demand is too low for broader gauge railways to be economically viable.

But by early 90's, the Indian Railways concluded that the advantages of uniformity and interchangeability were judged to outweigh any other possible benefits arising from the use of diverse gauges. Also narrow-gauge railways were deemed too costly to operate and maintain. Also to handle heavier, faster traffic, narrow-gauge railways were considered impractical to improve. In 1991, these led the Indian Railways to implement Project Unigauge which standardises most of the rail gauges in India to 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge.

Current status[edit]

Gauge 2016
Track km
2016
Track
share
2016
Route km
2016
Route
share
1951 
Route km
1951 
Route
share
Broad gauge (1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in)) 1,12,388 93.95% 60,510 90.74% 25258 47.0%
Metre gauge (1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in)) 4,747 3.97% 3,880 5.82% 24185 45.0%
Narrow gauges (762 mm (2 ft 6 in) and 610 mm (2 ft)) 2,495 2.08% 2,297 3.44% 4300 8.0%
Total 1,19,630 100% 66,687[1] 100% 53743 100%

Lines that will not be converted[edit]

Heritage Lines[edit]

Four narrow-gauge lines which are declared as heritage lines will not be converted to broad gauge. These are:

Heritage Railway Name
Track Gauge
Route km
Nilgiri Mountain Railway 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in) 46
Kalka–Shimla Railway 762 mm (2 ft 6 in) 94
Darjeeling Himalayan Railway 610 mm (2 ft) 79
Matheran Hill Railway 610 mm (2 ft) 20
Total 239

Urban rail lines[edit]

Urban rail transit lines (except suburban rail which are already in broad gauge) which serve the urban areas were built or are being built in standard gauge only and will not be converted to broad gauge. These encompass metro, monorail and trams.

Lines where conversion is remaining[edit]

  • Northern Railway
  1. PathankotJoginder Nagar (164 km) (NG) in Himachal Pradesh
  • Western Railway
  1. AhmedabadBotad (177 km)
  2. HimmatnagarKhed Brahma (54 km)
  3. Ahmedabad – Ranuj (114 km)
  4. AmbliyasanVijapur (42 km)
  5. BhadranNadiad (58 km) (NG)
  6. BilimoraWaghai (63 km) (NG)
  7. ChandodDabhoi (17 km) (NG)
  8. ChorandaMoti Koral (19 km) (NG)
  9. DabhoiMalsar (70 km) (NG)
  10. JetpurLathi (87 km)
  11. JunagadhDelvada (159 km)
  12. KosambaUmarpada (61 km) (NG)
  13. PratapnagarJambusar (51 km) (NG)
  14. VeravalTalalaDhasa Jn. (190 km)
  15. MhowSanawad (64 km) in Madhya Pradesh
  • North Eastern Railway
  1. BahraichMailani (205 km)
  2. MailaniPilibhit (64 km)
  3. Mathura Jn.Vrindavan (12 km)
  4. Nanpara JunctionNepalganj Road (19 km)
  5. ShahjahanpurPilibhit (84 km)
  • North Western Railway
  1. MarwarMavli (151 km)
  • Central Railway
  1. PachoraJamner (56 km) (NG)
  2. PulgaonArvi (35 km) (NG)
  • North Central Railway
  1. GwaliorSheopur Kalan (199 km) (NG)
  2. Dhaulpur-Mohari-Sirmuttra (70 km)(NG)
  3. MohariTantpur (18 km)(NG)
  • South East Central Railway
  1. NagpurNagbhid (110 km) (NG)
  2. RajimAbhanpur (17 km) (NG)
  3. RaipurDhamtari (73 km) (NG)

Lines under conversion[edit]

  • Western Railway
  1. BhujNaliya (101 km) in Gujarat
  2. ChhuchapuraTankhala (38 km)
  3. Timba RoadDabhoi (101 km)
  4. MahesanaTaranga Hill (57 km)
  5. AhmedabadUdaipur (298 km)
  6. SanawadKhandwaAkola (224 km) in Madhya Pradesh/Maharashtra
  • North Western Railway
  1. JaipurSikar (108 km)
  2. ChuruFatehpur Shekhawati (43 km)
  3. MavliBari Sadri (82 km)
  • Southern Railway
  1. BodinayakkanurMadurai (88 km) in Tamil Nadu
  2. AryankavuEdamon (25.2 km) in Kerala
  3. ThiruvarurKaraikudi (148 km) in Tamil Nadu
  • South East Central Railway
  1. NagpurChhindwaraNainpur (289 km) (NG)
  2. NainpurMandla Fort (42 km) (NG)
  3. BalaghatGhansor (109 km) (NG)
  • North Eastern Railway
  1. Majhola PakaryaTanakpur (36.77 km)
  2. NarkatiaganjBhikhana Thori (36 km)
  3. NarkatiaganjRaxaul (41 km)
  4. TharbitiaForbesganj (72 km)
  5. Lucknow (Aishbagh) – Sitapur (90 km)
  6. SitapurMailani (106 km)
  7. BihariganjBanmankhi (28 km)
  8. BahraichGonda (61 km)
  9. JhanjharpurNirmali (32 km)
  10. SaharsaRaghopur (63 km)
  11. GainsariJarwa (15 km) in Uttar Pradesh
  12. Jhanjharpur – Laukaha Bazar (62 km)
  13. DohrighatIndara (33 km)
  14. MandhanaBrahmavart (10 km)
  • Central Railway
  1. AchalpurYavatmal (186 km) (NG)
  • Eastern Railway
  1. BalgonaKatwa (26 km) (West Bengal)
  2. pachandiKatwa (14 km) (West Bengal)
  3. ShantipurNabadwip (13 km) (West Bengal)

Lines where conversion is completed[edit]

2017[edit]

  1. Bareilly CityRamganga (9 km) in UP
  2. Punalur-Edamon (10 km) in Kerala
  3. Sengottai-Aryankavu (14 km) in Tamil Nadu/Kerala
  4. RatangarhSardarshahar (46 km) in Rajasthan
  5. PollachiPodanur (40 km) in Tamil Nadu
  6. PilibhitMajhola Pakarya (26 km) in UP [1]
  7. Ahmedpurpachandi (39 km) (West Bengal) [2]
  8. SukrimanglaGhansor (35 km) (Madhya Pradesh)
  9. BaraigramDullabcherra (28 km) in Assam
  10. AmguriTuli (15 km)(NFR)(Completed in 2007)[3]
  11. SikarFatehpur Shekhawati (47 km) in Rajasthan

2016[edit]

  1. BadarpurAgartala (227 km) in Assam/Tripura [4]
  2. SilcharJiribam (50 km) in Assam/Manipur
  3. KatakhalBairabi (84 km) in Assam/Mizoram [5]
  4. IndoreMhow (21 km) in Madhya Pradesh [6]
  5. HanumangarhSadulpur (172 km) in Rajasthan [7]
  6. BanmankhiPurnia in Bihar (36 km) [8]
  7. ThaweChhapra (107 km) in Bihar [9]
  8. KotturuGunda Road (52 km) (Karnataka) [10]
  9. JabalpurSukrimangla (43 km) (Madhya Pradesh)
  10. MaishashanKarimganj (11 km) (NFR) [11]
  11. BhojipuraPilibhit (39.03 km)

2015[edit]

  1. North LakhimpurMurkongselek (154 km) in Assam [12][13]
  2. BaliparaBhalukpong (34 km) in Assam [14]
  3. LumdingSilchar (210 km) in Assam [15]
  4. PollachiPalakkad (55 km) in Tamil Nadu/Kerala [16]
  5. SikarLoharu (122 km) in Rajasthan [17]
  6. GondaBarhni (107 km) in Uttar Pradesh

2014[edit]

  1. Raxaul – Chauradano (24 km) in Bihar
  2. PalaniPollachi (63 km) in Tamil Nadu [18]
  3. FatehabadIndore Junction (35 km) in Madhya Pradesh [19]
  4. AnkleshwarRajpipla (63 km) in Gujarat [20]
  5. BareillyKasganj (106 km) in Uttar Pradesh [21]
  6. Rangapara North – Tezpur (27 km) in Assam
  7. Dauram Madhepura – Banmankhi (42 km) in Bihar
  8. Rangiya – Rangapara North (122 km) in Assam
  9. Rangapara North – Harmuti (143 km) in Assam

2013[edit]

  1. RatlamFatehabad (85.74 km) in Madhya Pradesh [22]
  2. VirudhunagarManamadurai (66 km) in Tamil Nadu [23]
  3. KolarChikbalapur (85 km) in Karnataka [24]

2012[edit]

  1. Bareilly CityLalkua in Uttar Pradesh
  2. MayiladuturaiThiruvarur in Tamil Nadu

2011[edit]

  1. KrishnanagarShantipur in West Bengal
  2. SitamarhiBairgania in Bihar
  3. KaptanganjThawe in Uttar Pradesh
  4. KatiharTejnarayanpur in Bihar
  5. MavliNathdwara in Rajasthan
  6. AnandapuramTalguppa in Karnataka
  7. DindigulPalani in Tamil Nadu
  8. TirunelveliTenkasi in Tamil Nadu
  9. BodeliChottaudepur in Gujarat
  10. BardhmanBalgona in West Bengal
  11. AunriharJaunpur in Uttar Pradesh
  12. Aluabari RoadSiliguri in West Bengal
  13. RatangarhBikaner in Rajasthan
  14. BharuchSamniDahej in Gujarat
  15. ParlakimidiGunupur in Odisha
  16. MathuraAchhnera in Uttar Pradesh
  17. KatiharManihari in Bihar
  18. ShimogaAnandapuramin Karnataka
  19. NanjangudChamarajanagar in Karnataka
  20. BagalkotGadag in Karnataka
  21. MysoreNanjangud in Karnataka
  22. BijapurBagalkot in Karnataka
  23. Sakleshpur – Subramanya Rd in Karnataka

2010[edit]

  1. Kanpur CentralFarukkhabad in Uttar Pradesh
  2. DeganaRatangarh in Rajasthan
  3. RatangarhSadulpur in Rajasthan
  4. BhildiSamdari in Rajasthan
  5. PakalaDharmavaram in Andhra Pradesh
  6. VelloreVillupuram in Tamil Nadu

Before 2010[edit]

  1. PhuleraRingasRewari in Rajasthan/Haryana
  2. GuntakalKalluru in Andhra Pradesh
  3. MathuraKasganj in Uttar Pradesh

See also[edit]

References[edit]