Essay On Land Transport In India

Definition: Road transport means transportation of goods and personnel from one place to the other on roads. Road is a route between two destinations, which has been either paved or worked on to enable transportation by way of motorised and non-motorised carriages. There are many advantages of road transport in comparison to other means of transport. The investment required in road transport is very less compared to other modes of transport such as railways and air transport. The cost of construction, operating cost and maintaining roads is cheaper than that of the railways.

Description: Road transport can be classified as transporting either goods and materials or transporting people. The major advantage of road transport is that it can enable door-to-door delivery of goods and materials and can provide a very cost-effective means of cartage, loading and unloading. Sometimes road transport is the only way for carrying goods and people to and from rural areas which are not catered to by rail, water or air transport. Delivery of goods between cities, towns and small villages is made possible only through road transport. However, in spite of various merits, road transport has some major limitations. For instance, there are more chances of accidents and breakdowns in case of road transport. So, motor transport is not as safe as other means of transport. Road transport is also quite less organised in comparison with other modes. It is irregular and undependable. Rates for road transportation are also unstable and unequal, while the speed in road transport is slow and limited, which is a major drawback. Transporting bulky goods over long distances is also unsuitable and costly. In modern days, road transport has a serious negative impact on the environment. Building roads requires melting of tar or formulation of concrete, which may harm the associated environment. Since roads have been a major enabler of motorised transport, these vehicles also emit a lot of pollution in the form of Nitrogen dioxide, volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide and various harmful air pollutants, including benzene, which have an adverse respiratory health effects and a serious threat to global warming. While improvisation of roads is a serious topic of research, road transport of the future includes aspects like solar panel roads and cars where solar cells have replaced asphalt or tar, and there are vehicles with electric motors reducing emission. Road transport of the future aims to work on these negativities and turn them around.


    Rail Transport

    Definition: Rail transport is also known as train transport. It is a means of transport, on vehicles which run on tracks (rails or railroads). It is one of the most important, commonly used and very cost effective modes of commuting and goods carriage over long, as well as, short distances. Since this system runs on metal (usually steel) rails and wheels, it has an inherent benefit of lesser frictional resistance which helps attach more load in terms of wagons or carriages. This system is known as a train. Usually, trains are powered by an engine locomotive running on electricity or on diesel. Complex signaling systems are utilised if there are multiple route networks. Rail transport is also one of the fastest modes of land transport. Description: Rail transport has emerged as one of the most dependable modes of transport in terms of safety. Trains are fast and the least affected by usual weather turbulences like rain or fog, compared to other transport mechanisms. Rail transport is better organised than any other medium of transport. It has fixed routes and schedules. Its services are more certain, uniform and regular compared to other modes of transport. Rail transport originated from human hauled contraptions in ancient Greece. Now it has evolved into a modern, complex and sophisticated system used both in urban and cross-country (and continent) networks over long distances. Rail transport is an enabler of economic progress, used to mobilise goods as well as people. Adaptations include passenger railways, underground (or over ground) urban metro railways and goods carriages. Rail transport has some constraints and limitations also. One of the biggest constraints of rail transport is heavy cost. Trains need high capital to build and maintain and the cost is magnified when a whole rail network is to be built. The cost of construction, maintenance and overhead expenses are very high compared to other modes of transport. Also, rail transport cannot provide door-to-door service as it is tied to a particular track. Intermediate loading or unloading involves greater cost, more wear and tear and wastage of time.

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    Transport planning

    Transport planning is defined as planning required in the operation, provision and management of facilities and services for the modes of transport to achieve safer, faster, comfortable, convenient, economical and environment-friendly movement of people and goods.

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Transport in India consists of transport by land, water, and air. Public transport remains the primary mode of transport for most Indian citizens, and India's public transport systems are among the most heavily used in the world.[1]

Motor vehicle population in India is low as per international standards, with only 24.85 million cars on the nation's roads as of 2013.[2] In total, about 21 per cent households have two wheelers whereas only 4.7 per cent of households in India have cars/jeeps/vans as per the 2011 Census.[3][4] Despite this, the number of deaths caused by traffic is amongst the highest in the world and increasing.[5][6] The automobile industry in India is currently rapidly growing with an annual production of over 4.6 million vehicles,[7] with an annual growth rate of 10.5%[3] and vehicle volume is expected to rise greatly in the future.[8]

India's rail network is the 3rd longest and the most heavily used system in the world,[1] transporting 8.225 billion passengers and over 970 million tonnes of freight annually, as of 2015.[9] The railways transport about 18 million citizens daily.

In 2015–16, Government of India, declared 106 National Waterways (NW) under Inland Waterways Authority of India to reduce the cost of transportation and lower the carbon footprint by moving the traffic from surface roads and railroads to waterways.[10]

Despite ongoing improvements in the transport sector, several aspects of transportation are still riddled with problems due to outdated infrastructure and lack of investment in less economically active parts of the country. The demand for transport infrastructure and services has been rising by around 10% a year[1] with the current infrastructure being unable to meet these growing demands. According to Goldman Sachs, India will need to spend US$1.7 trillion on infrastructure projects over the next decade to boost economic growth.

Human/Animal powered[edit]


Walking constituted major form of transport in ancient times. People used to cover long distances on foot or bullock carts. For instance, Adi Sankaracharya travelled all over India from Kalady near Kochi.[11] Walking still constitutes an important mode of transport in urban areas.[12] In the city of Mumbai, to further improve the transit conditions for pedestrians, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority, has commenced the construction of more than 50 skywalks,[13][14] as part of the Mumbai Skywalk project, which is very helpful as walk enthusiasts take part in reducing traffic.


Palanquins, also known as palkis or pallakiis, was one of the luxurious methods primarily used by the rich and noblemen for travelling and also to carry a deity (idol) of a God. Many temples have sculptures of God being carried in a palki.[15] Modern use of the palanquin is limited to Indian weddings, pilgrimage and carrying idol of God.[16][17]


Bicycles (simply called cycles in India) have ownership rates ranging from around 30% to 75% at the state level.[4] Along with walking, cycling accounts for 50 to 80% of the commuter trips for those in the informal sector in urban areas.[12] However, recent developments suggest that bicycle riding is fast becoming popular in the metro cities of India. Today, government development authorities all over India encourages the setup and use of separate bicycle lanes alongside the roads to combat pollution and ease traffic congestion.[18]

Human-pulled rickshaws[edit]

Human-pulled rickshaw are still available in various cities and villages in the country. Many local governments have proposed a ban on these rickshaws describing them as "inhuman". The Government of West Bengal proposed a ban on these rickshaws in 2005.[19] Though a bill aiming to address this issue, termed as Calcutta Hackney Carriage Bill, was passed by the West Bengal Assembly in 2006, it has not been implemented yet.[20] The Government of West Bengal is working on an amendment to this bill to avoid the loopholes that got exposed when the Hand-pulled Rickshaw Owner's Association filed a petition against the bill.[20]

Cycle rickshaws[edit]

Cycle rickshaws were introduced in India in the 1940s.[21] They are bigger than a tricycle where two people sit on an elevated seat at the back and a person pedals from the front. In the late 2000s, they were banned in several cities for causing traffic congestion.[22][23][24] The Delhi Police recently submitted an affidavit against plying of cycle rickshaws to ease traffic congestion in the city but it was dismissed by the Delhi High Court.[25] In addition, environmentalists have supported the retention of cycle rickshaws as a non-polluting and inexpensive mode of transport.[26]

Bullock carts/Horse carriages[edit]

Bullock carts have been traditionally used for transport, especially in rural India. The arrival of the British saw drastic improvements in the horse carriages which were used for transport since early days. Today, they are used in smaller towns and are referred as Tanga or buggies. Victorias of Mumbai are still used for tourist purposes, but horse carriages are now rarely found in the cities of India.[27] In recent years cities have banned the movement of slow moving vehicles on the main roads.[28][29][30]


Main article: Indian road network

As per 2013 estimates, the total road length in India is 4,689,842 km (2,914,133 mi);[31] making the Indian road network the second largest road network in the world after the United States. At 0.66 km of highway per square kilometre of land the density of India's highway network is higher than that of the United States (0.65) and far higher than that of China's (0.16) or Brazil's (0.20).[1]

India has a network of National Highways connecting all the major cities and state capitals, forming the economic backbone of the country. As of 2013, India has a total of 70,934 km (44,076 mi) of National Highways, of which 1,208 km (751 mi) are classified as expressways.[32]

As per the National Highways Authority of India, about 65% of freight and 80% passenger traffic is carried by the roads. The National Highways carry about 40% of total road traffic, though only about 2% of the road network is covered by these roads.[32] Average growth of the number of vehicles has been around 10.16% per annum over recent years.[32]

Under National Highways Development Project (NHDP), work is under progress to equip national highways with four lanes; also there is a plan to convert some stretches of these roads to six lanes.[33] All national highways are metalled, but very few are constructed of concrete, the most notable being the Mumbai-Pune Expressway. In recent years construction has commenced on a nationwide system of multi-lane highways, including the Golden Quadrilateral and North-South and East-West Corridors which link the largest cities in India.

In 2000, around 40% of villages in India lacked access to all-weather roads and remained isolated during the monsoon season.[1][34] To improve rural connectivity, Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (Prime Minister's Rural Road Program), a project funded by the Central Government with the help of World Bank, was launched in 2000 to build all-weather roads to connect all habitations with a population of 500 or above (250 or above for hilly areas).[34][35]

Generally, traffic in most of the cities in India moves slowly, where traffic jams and accidents are very common, but in some cities like Chandigarh, wide roads and less vehicles contribute to lesser traffic.[36][37] India has very poor records on road safely—around 90,000 people die from road accidents every year.[38] At least 13 people die every hour in road accidents in the country, also in the year 2007 road accidents claimed more than 130,000 lives, overtaking China.[39][40] A Reader's Digest study of traffic congestion in Asian cities ranked several Indian cities within the Top Ten for worst traffic.[37]

Type of RoadLength
Expressways1,208 km (751 mi) as of 2011
National Highways79,116 km (49,160 mi)
State Highways155,716 km (96,757 mi)
District, Rural and Other Roads4,455,010 km (2,768,210 mi)
Total Length4,689,842 km (2,914,133 mi) (Approx)


Buses are an important means of public transport in India. Due to this social significance, urban bus transport is often owned and operated by public agencies, and most state governments operate bus services through a State Road Transport Corporation.[41] These corporations have proven extremely useful in connecting villages and towns across the country.[42] Alongside the public companies are many private bus fleets: 2012, there were 131,800 publicly owned buses in India, but 1,544,700 buses owned by private companies.[43]

However, the share of buses is negligible in most Indian cities as compared to personalised vehicles, and two-wheelers and cars account for more than 80 percent of the vehicle population in most large cities.[42] Many Indian states government have their own fleet of buses which are run under their State Transport Department. Some of the top bus fleet are as follows:

Sr. No.StateBus Fleet of all STU's
2Tamil Nadu23078
4Uttar pradesh12194
5Andhra pradesh11785
12Himachal pradesh2600
14West Bengal2345
19Jammu & Kashmir529

Bus Rapid Transit System[edit]

Main article: Bus rapid transit in India

Bus rapid transit systems (BRTS), exist in several cities of the country.[44] Buses take up over 90% of public transport in Indian cities,[45] and serve as an important mode of transport. Services are mostly run by state government owned Transport Corporations.[42] In 1990s all government State Transport Corporations have introduced various facilities like low-floor buses for the disabled and air-conditioned buses to attract private car owners to help decongest roads.[46][47] The Ahmedabad Bus Rapid Transport System, in 2010 won the prestigious Sustainable Transport Award from the Transportation Research Board in Washington[48].

Rainbow BRTS in Pune is the first BRTS system in the country. Mumbai introduced air conditioned buses in 1998.[49] Bangalore was the first city in India to introduce Volvo B7RLE intra-city buses in India in January 2005 .[50][51][52] Apsrtc is the first transport corporation to introduce night services and online reservation. Bangalore is the first Indian city to have an air-conditioned bus stop, located near Cubbon Park. It was built by Airtel.[53] The city of Chennai houses one of Asia's largest bus terminus, the Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus.[54]

Motor vehicles[edit]


Motorised two-wheeler vehicles like scooters, motorcycles and mopeds are very popular mode of transport due to their fuel efficiency and ease of use in congested roads or streets. The number of two-wheelers sold is several times that of cars. There were 47.5 million powered two-wheelers in India in 2003 compared with just 8.6 million cars.[55]

Manufacture of motorcycles in India started when Royal Enfield began assembly in its plant in Chennai in 1948. Royal Enfield, an iconic brand name in the country, manufactures different variants of the British Bullet motorcycle which is a classic motorcycle that is still in production.[56]Hero MotoCorp (formerly Hero Honda), Honda, Bajaj Auto, Yamaha, TVS Motors and Mahindra 2 Wheelers are the largest two-wheeler companies in terms of market-share.[57]

Manufacture of scooters in India started when Automobile Products of India (API), set up at Mumbai and incorporated in 1949, began assembling Innocenti-built Lambretta scooters in India.[58] They eventually acquired licence for the Li150 series model, of which they began full-fledged production from the early sixties onwards.[citation needed] In 1972, Scooters India Ltd (SIL), a state-run enterprise based in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, bought the entire manufacturing rights of the last Innocenti Lambretta model. API has infrastructural facilities at Mumbai, Aurangabad, and Chennai but has been non-operational since 2002. SIL stopped producing scooters in 1998.[citation needed]

Motorcycles and scooters can be rented in many cities, Wicked Ride, Metro bikes and many other companies are working with state governments to solve last mile connectivity problems with mass transit solutions.[59] Wearing protective headgear is mandatory for both the rider and the pillion-rider in most cities.[60]


Private automobiles account for 30% of the total transport demand in urban areas of India. An average of 963 new private vehicles are registered every day in Delhi alone.[61] The number of automobiles produced in India rose from 6.3 million in 2002–03 to 11 million (11.2 million) in 2008–09.[62] However, India still has a very low rate of car ownership. When comparing car ownership between BRIC developing countries, it is on a par with China,[63] and exceeded by Brazil and Russia.[63]

Compact cars, especially hatchbacks predominate due to affordability, fuel efficiency, congestion, and lack of parking space in most cities. Chennai is known as the "Detroit of India" for its automobile industry.[64]Maruti, Hyundai and Tata Motors are the most popular brands in the order of their market share. The Ambassador once had a monopoly but is now an icon of pre-liberalisation India, and is still used by taxi companies. Maruti 800 launched in 1984 created the first revolution in the Indian auto sector because of its low pricing. It had the highest market share until 2004, when it was overtaken by other low-cost models from Maruti such as the Alto and the Wagon R, the Indica from Tata Motors and the Santro from Hyundai. Over the 20-year period since its introduction, about 2.4 million units of the Maruti 800 have been sold.[65] However, with the launch of the Tata Nano, the least expensive production car in the world, Maruti 800 lost its popularity.[66]

India is also known for a variety of indigenous vehicles made in villages out of simple motors and vehicle spare-parts. A few of these innovations are the Jugaad, Maruta, Chhakda, Peter Rehda and the Fame.[67]

In the city of Bangalore, Radio One and the Bangalore Traffic Police, launched a carpooling drive which has involved celebrities such as Robin Uthappa, and Rahul Dravid encouraging the public to carpool.[68][69][70] The initiative got a good response, and by the end of May 2009, 10,000 people are said to have carpooled in the city.[71]

Utility vehicles[edit]

The first utility vehicle in India was manufactured by Mahindra. It was a copy of the original Jeep and was manufactured under licence.[72] The vehicle was an instant hit and made Mahindra one of the top companies in India. The Indian Army and police extensively use Mahindra vehicles along with Maruti Gypsys for transporting personnel and equipment.

Tata Motors, the automobile manufacturing arm of the Tata Group, launched its first utility vehicle, the Tata Sumo, in 1994.[73][74] The Sumo, owing to its then-modern design, captured a 31% share of the market within two years.[75] The Tempo Trax from Force Motors till recently was ruling the rural areas. Sports utility vehicles now form a sizeable part of the passenger vehicle market.[76] Models from Tata, Honda, Hyundai, Ford, Chevrolet and other brands are available.[77]


Main article: Taxis in India

Most of the taxicabs in India are either Premier Padmini or Hindustan Ambassador cars.[78] However, with app based taxi services like Uber coming to India as well as homegrown Indian app based taxi services like Ola coming to the fore, taxicabs now include Sedans[79], SUVs[80] and even motorcycle taxis[81]. Depending on the city/state, taxis can either be hailed or hired from taxi-stands. In cities such as Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad, taxis need to be hired over phone,[82] whereas in cities like Kolkata and Mumbai, taxis can be hailed on the street. According to government of India regulations, all taxis are required to have a fare-meter installed.[83] There are additional surcharges for luggage, late-night rides and toll taxes are to be paid by the passenger. Since 2006, radio taxis have become increasingly popular with the public due to reasons of safety and convenience.[84]

In cities and localities where taxis are expensive or do not ply as per the government or municipal regulated fares, people use share taxis. These are normal taxis which carry one or more passengers travelling to destinations either on one route to the final destination, or near the final destination.[citation needed] The passengers are charged according to the number of people with different destinations.[citation needed] The city of Mumbai will soon be the first city in India, to have an "in-taxi" magazine, titled MumBaee, which will be issued to taxis which are part of the Mumbai Taximen's Union. The magazine debuted on 13 July 2009.[85] In Kolkata, there are many no refusal taxi available with white and blue in colour.[86]

Auto Rickshaws[edit]

Main article: Autorickshaw

An auto rickshaw is a three-wheeler vehicle for hire that does not have doors and is generally characterised by a small cabin for the driver in the front and a seat for passengers in the rear.[87] Generally it is painted in yellow, green or black color and has a black, yellow or green canopy on the top, but designs vary considerably from place to place. The color of the autorickshaw is also determined by the fuel that it is powered by, for example Agartala, Ahmedabad, Mumbai and Delhi have green or black autos indicating the use of compressed natural gas, whereas the autos of Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad have green autos indicating the use of LPG.[citation needed]

In Mumbai and other metropolitan cities, 'autos' or 'rickshaws' as they are popularly known have regulated metered fares. A recent law prohibits auto rickshaw drivers from charging more than the specified fare, or charging night-fare before midnight, and also prohibits the driver from refusing to go to a particular location. Mumbai and Kolkata are also the only two cities which prohibit auto rickshaws from entering a certain part of the city, in these cases being South Mumbai and certain parts of Downtown Kolkata.[88] However, in cities like Chennai, it is common to see autorickshaw drivers demand more than the specified fare and refuse to use fare meter.[89]

Airports and railway stations at many cities such as Howrah, Chennai and Bangalore provide a facility of prepaid auto booths, where the passenger pays a fixed fare as set by the authorities for various locations.[90]

Electric rickshaw is new popular means of transport, rapidly growing in number in India, due to low running and initial cost, other economic and environment benefits, these vehicles are becoming popular in India. E-Rickshaws are made in fiberglass or metal body, powered by a BLDC Electric Motor with max power 2000W and speed 25 km/h.


Main articles: Rail transport in India and Indian Railways

Country-wide rail services in India, are provided by the state-run Indian Railways under the supervision of the Ministry of Railways. IR is divided into seventeen zones including the Kolkata Metro Railway.[92] The IR are further sub-divided into sixty seven divisions, each having a divisional headquarters.[93][94]

The railway network traverses through the length and breadth of the country, covering more than 7,000 stations over a total route length of more than 65,000 km (40,000 mi) and track length of about 115,000 km (71,000 mi).[95] About 22,224 km (13,809 mi) or 34% of the route-kilometre was electrified as on 31 March 2012.[96] IR provides an important mode of transport in India, transporting over 18 million passengers and more than 2 million tonnes of freight daily across one of the largest and busiest rail networks in the world.[95] IR is the world's largest commercial or utility employer, with more than 1.4 million employees.[97][98] As to rolling stock, IR owns over 200,000 (freight) wagons, 50,000 coaches and 8,000 locomotives.[97] It also owns locomotive and coach production facilities. It operates both long distance and suburban rail systems on a network of broad gauge

The IR runs a number of special types of services which are given higher priority. The Rajdhani trains introduced in 1969 provides connectivity between the national capital, Delhi and capitals of the states. On the other hand, Shatabdi Express provides connectivity between centres of tourism, pilgrimage or business. The Shatabdi Express trains run over short to medium distances and do not have sleepers while the Rajdhani Expresses run over longer distances and have only sleeping accommodation. Both series of trains have a maximum permissible speed of 110 to 140 km/h (81 to 87 mph) but average speed of less than 100 km/h.[citation needed]. The Duronto Express (without any commercial stop between the origin and the destination but with a few technical stops for crew change and food intake) and Garib Raths express that provide cheap no-frill airconditioned rail travel.

Besides, the IR also operates a number of luxury trains which cater to various tourist circuits. For instance, the Palace on Wheels serves the Rajasthan circuit and The Golden Chariot serves the Karnataka and Goa circuits.[citation needed] There are two UNESCO World Heritage Sites on IR, the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus[99] and the Mountain railways of India.[100] The latter consists of three separate railway lines located in different parts of India, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, a 610 mm (2 ft) narrow gauge railway in Lesser Himalayas in West Bengal, the Nilgiri Mountain Railway, a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in) metre gaugerack railway in the Nilgiri Hills in Tamil Nadu and the Kalka-Shimla Railway, a 762 mm (2 ft 6 in) narrow gauge railway in the Siwalik Hills in Himachal Pradesh.[100]

In India, freight (goods) trains can carry standard containers double-stacked on flat-bed wagons with normal axle load of about 22 tonnes and do not require special low-bed wagons unlike in other countries that have (relatively narrow) 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge. They carry almost 4000 tonnes per rake which is almost twice the load a normal goods train can haul. Some double-stacked container freight trains on the route through Rewari station also carry "high cube" containers that are 2896 mm (9 ft 6-inch) high (higher than standard containers that are generally 8 ft or 2.438 mm high) on special low-well wagons owned by private clients. Some private logistics operators have built container storage yards north of Rewari near Garhi Harsaru for this purpose.[citation needed]

In 1999, the Konkan Railway Corporation introduced the Roll on Roll off (RORO) service, a unique road-rail synergy system, on the section between Kolad in Maharashtra and Verna in Goa,[101] which was extended up to Surathkal in Karnataka in 2004.[102][103] The RORO service, the first of its kind in India, allowed trucks to be transported on flatbed trailers. It was highly popular,[104] carrying about 110,000 trucks and bringing in about ₹ 740 million worth of earnings to the corporation till 2007.[105]

High-speed rail[edit]

Main article: High-speed rail in India

India does not have any railways classified as high-speed rail (HSR), which have operational speeds in excess of 200 km/h (120 mph).[106] The fastest train in India is the Gatimaan Express with a top speed of 160 km/h (99 mph),[107][108] which runs between Delhi and Agra.[109]

Prior to the 2014 general election, the two major national parties (Bharatiya Janata Party and Indian National Congress) pledged to introduce high-speed rail. The INC pledged to connect all of India's million-plus cities by high-speed rail,[110] whereas BJP, which won the election, promised to build the Diamond Quadrilateral project, which would connect the cities of Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata, and Mumbai via high-speed rail.[111] This project was approved as a priority for the new government in the incoming prime minister's speech.[112] Construction of one kilometer of high speed railway track will cost ₹100 crore (US$15 million) – ₹140 crore (US$21 million) which is 10-14 times higher than the construction of standard railway.[113]

Indian government approved the choice of Japan to build India's first high-speed railway. The planned rail would run some 500 km (310 mi) between Mumbai and the western city of Ahmedabad, at a top speed of 320 km/h (200 mph).[114][115] Under the proposal, construction is expected to begin in 2017 and be completed in 2023. It would cost about ₹980 billion (US$15 billion) and be financed by a low-interest loan from Japan.[116] India will use the wheel-based 300 km/hr HSR technology, instead of new maglev600 km/hr technology of the Japan used in Chūō Shinkansen. India is expected to have its HSR line operational from 2025 onwards, once the safety checks are completed.

India's Frontier Railways[edit]

Rail links between India and neighbouring countries are not well-developed. Two trains operate to Pakistan—the Samjhauta Express between Delhi and Lahore, and the Thar Express between Jodhpur and Karachi. Bangladesh is connected by a biweekly train, the Maitree Express that runs from Kolkata to Dhaka. Two rail links to Nepal exist—passenger services between Jaynagar and Bijalpura, and freight services between Raxaul and Birganj.[117]

Indian and Bangladeshi governments will start work late by December or early by January 2015 on a new rail link to ease surface transport.[118] India will build a 15-km railway tracks linking Tripura's capital Agartala with Bangladesh's southeastern city of Akhaura, an important railway junction connected to Chittagong port, resource-rich Sylhet and Dhaka.[119] An agreement to implement the railway project was signed between India and Bangladesh in January 2010.[120] Total cost of the proposed project is estimated at Rs.252 crore. The Indian Railway Construction Company (IRCON) would lay the new railway tracks on both sides of the border. Of the 15 km rail line, five km of tracks fall in the Indian territory.[121][122] The NFR is now laying tracks to connect Tripura's southern most border town Sabroom, 135 km south of here. From Sabroom, the Chittagong international sea port is just 72 km.[123]

No rail link exists with Myanmar but a railway line is to be built through from Jiribam (in Manipur) to Tamu through Imphal and Moreh.[124] The construction of this missing link, as per the feasibility study conducted by the Ministry of External Affairs through RITES Ltd, is estimated to cost ₹29.41 billion (US$450 million).[125] An 18 km railway link with Bhutan is being constructed from Hashimara in West Bengal to Toribari in Bhutan. No rail link exists with either China or Sri Lanka.[126]

Suburban rail[edit]

Main article: Urban rail transit in India

The Mumbai Suburban Railway is the first rail system in India which began services in Mumbai in 1853, transports 6.3 million passengers daily and has the highest passenger density in the world.[127] The Kolkata Suburban Railway, was established in Kolkata in 1854.[128]

The operational suburban rail systems in India are in Mumbai Suburban Railway, Kolkata Suburban Railway, Lucknow-Kanpur Suburban Railway, Chennai Suburban Railway, Delhi Suburban Railway, Pune Suburban Railway, Hyderabad Multi-Modal Transport System, Barabanki-Lucknow Suburban Railway and Pernem-Karwar Suburban Railway.[42]

Other planned systems are Bengaluru Commuter Rail, Ahmedabad Suburban Railway and Coimbatore Suburban Railway.


Main article: Urban rail transit in India

The first modern rapid transit in India is the Kolkata Metro and started its operations in 1984, this is also the 17th Zone of the IR.[129] The Delhi Metro in New Delhi is India's second conventional metro and began operations in 2002. The Namma Metro in Bangalore is India's third operational rapid transit and began operations in 2011.

The operational systems are Kolkata Metro, Delhi Metro, Hyderabad Metro, Namma Metro, Rapid Metro, Mumbai Metro, Jaipur Metro, Chennai Metro, Kochi Metro and Lucknow Metro.

The planned systems are Noida Metro, Ghaziabad Metro, Navi Mumbai Metro, Nagpur Metro, Metro-Link Express for Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad, Varanasi Metro, Kanpur Metro, Bareilly Metro, Pune Metro, Vijayawada Metro, Patna Metro, Meerut Metro, Guwahati Metro, Chandigarh Metro, Bhopal Metro, Kozhikode Light Metro, Indore Metro, Thiruvananthapuram Light Metro, Agra Metro, Coimbatore Metro, Visakhapatnam Metro, Dehradun Metro, Surat Metro, Srinagar Metro, Greater Gwalior Metro, Jabalpur Metro and Greater Nashik Metro.

Currently, rapid transit are under construction or in planning in several major cities of India and will be opened shortly.


Main article: Urban rail transit in India

Monorail is generally considered as feeder system for the Metro trains in India. The Mumbai Monorail, which started in 2014, is the first operational monorail network in India[130] (excluding the Skybus Metro

An old Palanquin used in Kerala
Bicycles used by school children in West Bengal
Outer Ring Road (Nehru ORR) at Narsinghi, Hyderabad
Mumbai's B.E.S.T. is India's oldest operating transport body
Indian Railways Headquarters, Delhi
Bangalore City railway station entrance
Samjhauta Express between India and Pakistan
A suburban train in Mumbai

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