The Mysore State Railway started laying the Shimoga–Talaguppa 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3⁄8 in) metre gauge line in the year 1930 to provide access to Jog Falls. Another purpose was to transport wooden logs from the forests of the Malnad region to make wooden sleepers and also to be used as a fuel in the furnaces of the Visvesvaraya Iron and Steel Limited at Bhadravathi. In 1938, Mirza Ismail took the maiden journey on this line to visit Sagara city. The final section of the line from Sagara to Talaguppa was inaugurated on 9 November 1940. Some of the prominent people who have used this line to visit Jog Falls include Nalvadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar, Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar, Sir M. Visvesvaraya, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Morarji Desai. Socialist leader, Ram Manohar Lohia travelled in a train on this line to participate in the Kagodu Satyagraha but was arrested at Sagara station.
Railway stations in order from Shimoga to Talaguppa on this line are:
Shimoga Town — Kotegangur — Konagavalli — Harana Halli — Kumsi — Arasalu — Kenchanalu — Anandapuram — Adderi — Balegundi — Sagar Jambagaru — Kanle — Talaguppa.
Initially, 3 daily passenger trains and goods trains used to run on this line. The trains also used to carry construction material needed for the construction of the Linganamakki dam and the associated power house. Subsequently, the number of passenger trains were reduced to one and goods trains were withdrawn. In the 1990s, the line between Bangalore and Shimoga was converted to broad gauge, after which the passenger train on the Shimoga-Talaguppa line was replaced by a railcar. The railcar could accommodate 52 passengers and took 3:45 hours to cover the distance of 82 km, a journey which took considerably lesser time to cover by road. It was one of the few trains with conductors on board and tickets could be bought on the train itself, whereas the normal practice followed in Indian Railways, was that passengers should buy tickets before boarding a train. Once the railcar reaches Talaguppa, the rail car has to be reversed using a turntable, so that it can start its return journey.
Efforts were being made to convert this line into a 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) (Indian gauge) line so that trains could run from Talaguppa to places beyond Shimoga. However, there was a proposal to close down this line permanently as well. Indian Railways withdrew around 16 gatemen who were posted to man the level crossings along this line. This created a situation where in a mobile gateman had to travel aboard the railcar, get down near every level crossing to close the gates, allow the train to pass and then hop back on to the train. There is also a proposal to extend this line from Talaguppa onwards and connect it to Honnavar on the Konkan Railway, which could provide a shorter alternative route to Mumbai from southern parts of India.
The railcar was withdrawn when work was undertaken to convert the track into 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) (Indian gauge) and resumed after completion of the work. This is route is now broad gauge. There are a daily intercity express between Mysore–Talguppa, a daily express between Bangalore-Talguppa, a daily passenger between Mysore-Talguppa and a daily passenger between Shimoga-Talguppa.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Shimoga–Talaguppa railway.|
- "Heritage train turns bone of contention". Times of India. 2003-10-07. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- "People angry over move to close Shimoga–Talguppa railway line". The Hindu. 2005-09-19. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- Pramod Mellegatti (2003-12-01). "Movement for broadgauge picks up in Shimoga". The Hindu. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- M. Bhaktavatsala (2006-08-13). "All trains lead to Shimoga". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 2008-02-21.[dead link]
- "Birur Jn–Talguppa". IRFCA.org. 2008-02-21.
- Raghavendra Bettakoppa (2004-03-02). "On the right track?". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- "Railcar, baskets and babies". The Hindu. 2005-12-10. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- "A trip on the Shimoga Town - Talguppa MG railbus". Irfca.org. Archived from the original on 20 December 2007. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- Govind D. Belgaumkar (2006-02-23). "Expectations soar on the eve of Rail budget". The Hindu. Retrieved 2008-02-21.
- "Rail section closed". The Hindu. 2007-08-28. Retrieved 2008-02-21.