Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Railways
27-March-2015 17:57 IST
Suresh Prabhu Inaugurates Landmark Lumding-Silchar (Assam) Broad Gauge Railway Line Project by Flagging off A Goods Train - Bringing This Region on the National Broad Guage Railway Map


Train Passenger Services to Start Soon on this Section


This Railway Line Heralds A New Era of Broad Gauge Connectivity in North-Eastern Region Working as Lifeline for Bark Valley in Assam and the States of Tripura, Manipur & Mizoram


The Railway Line will be Cruicial for the Supply of Foodgrains, Fertilizers, Petroleum Products the Region 


This Rs.3500 Crore National Project Completed as an Engneering Marvel Despite Difficult Hilly Terrain, Geologially Unstable Hills and Difficult Law & Order Challenges






The Minister of Railways Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu inaugurated Lumding-Silchar broad gauge section (Assam) by flagging off a goods train via video conferencing at a function here today. The passenger train services will be started soon on this section. This is a landmark achievement by Indian Railways and important broad gauge railway connectivity project. Lumding-Silchar section is Phase-1 of the two phase broad gauge line project in this area. This Phase-I line provides seamless BG connectivity to Barak Valley of Assam with the rest of the country. The phase-II consists of gauge conversion of three sections namely; Badarpur – Kumarghat, Baraigram - Dullabcherra and Silchar-Jiribam, which will be completed by 31.03.2016. States of Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura will also be on Broad Gauge by March, 2016 on completion of works of Phase - II. These states are dependent on this line for supply of food-grains, fertilizers, petroleum products etc. This Lumdin-Silchar line is a milestone for the connectivity in the N.E. region and one of the largest gauge conversion projects of Indian Railways completed at a cost of Rs. 3500 crore. The project was completed despite difficult hilly terrain, geologically unstable hills and difficult law & order challenges and has been appreciated as an engineering marvel in all respects. A number of railwaymen sacrificed their lives in the completion of this project. 

The Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha was specially present on the occasion. Also present on the occasion among others were Chairman, Railway Board, Shri A.K.Mital, Member Engineering and other Board Member and senior railway officials.

Speaking on this occasion, Railway Minister Shri Suresh Prabhu said that opening up of Lumding, Silchar Broad Gauge railway line marks a historical day in the history of Railways in north-eastern region and he is  happy to be a part of this history. He said that this is an important mile-stone in the integration of north-eastern region to the nation. Shri Suresh Prabhu said it will accelerate development in the region. The Minister pointed out that an all time high fund allotment has been done for ongoing new line, gauge conversion and doubling projects in north-eastern region. Shri Suresh Prabhu congratulated railway engineers and the project team whose unrelenting efforts could make this project see a reality and BG train movement a possibility in a time bound and systematic manner. The Railway Minister said that this  railway line is the life line of Barak valley and the states of Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram.  I have flagged off a goods train today on this line and soon passenger train services will also start plying on this section, after the approval of Commissioner of Railway Safety. This will also ensure movement of essential commodities like foodgrain, fertilizers and petroleum products in this area. Indian Railway is committed to the development of railway connectivity in the north eastern region. He informed that Recently Meghalaya was brought on railway map for the first time and also capital of Arunachal Pradesh was connected to the National Capital by a direct train.  

The 210 kms. long  Lumding – Silchar Railway Line is life line for Barak Valley and the States of Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram. These States are dependent on this line for supply of foodgrains, fertilizers, Petroleum products etc. After Gauge Conversion of Guwahati – Lumding line in 1994, the transhipment point got shifted from Guwahati to Lumding.  The Lumding-Silchar Gauge Conversion Project under the Northeast Frontier Railway was sanctioned in 1996-97 and was declared as a National Project in 2004. In the initial years of the project the flow of funds had been very meager and allotments increased from 2004. The project was hit by insurgency during the years 2006 to 2009 and Territorial Army had to be deployed in the region to curb the insurgency. Normal working could be started only after 2009.

The salient features of completed section of Phase-I are as follows

Phase – I: Lumding – Silchar Section (210 Km):

Cost                             : Rs 3500 crores

Major Bridges             : 79 no.

Minor Bridges             : 340 no.

Tunnels                        : 21 No. (Total length 12.86 Km)

Mega block to complete the gauge conversion was taken from 01.10.2014.

The work involved working at 101 locations simultaneously round the clock.

Many locations of bridges, tunnels and cuttings needed to be tackled during the mega block.Law and order situation also deteriorated, which was handled successfully by Territorial Army deployed at site.First Broad Gauge Engine reached Silchar on 13.03.2015 which was greeted by 20,000 strong crowd at the Railway station.First Broad Gauge trial train was taken to Silchar on 14.03.2015 and another complete train trial carried out on 15.03.2015. Lumding- Silchar section is being opened to goods traffic today and  passenger services will be started after inspection by Commissioner of Railway Safety in April, 2015. Lumding – New Hafflong Section has been inspected by Commissioner of Railway Safety.

This challenging project could be completed within the deadline of 31st March, 2015 as a result of round the clock working and tireless efforts of officers, staff and contractors of Northeastern .Frontier .Railway.

This line provides seamless BG connectivity to Barak Valley of Assam with the rest of the country. States of Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura will also be on Broad Gauge by March, 2016 on completion of works of Phase - II.

This line is bound to change the landscape of the region and usher the Barak Valley along with the States of Manipur, Tripura and Mizoram to the new era of socio-economic development.

Salient feature of Phase-II are as follows:-

Phase II:  Badarpur – Kumarghat, Baraigram - Dullabcherra and Silchar-Jiribam:

Total length                 : 224 Km

Cost                             : Rs 1600 crore

Mega block of remaining sections (total length 224 Km) viz. Badarpur – Kumarghat, Baraigram - Dullabcherra and Silchar-Jribam will be taken from 01.10.2015 and to be completed by 31.03.2016.

Alongwith this, the line from Kumarghat to Agartala, which was opened as  a Meter Gauge section in 2008, will also be converted to Broad Gauge in March, 2016.  This will provide seamless connectivity to the Capital of Tripura with the rest of the country.

Other Important developments in the North East:

Meghalaya has been brought on Railway map for the first time with commissioning of Dudhnoi – Mendipathar New Line.

Itanagar, the capital of Arunachal Pradesh was connected with the National Capital with the flagging off of direct train between Naharlagun and New Delhi by Hon’ble Prime Minister.

Harmuti – North Lakhimpur section has been commissioned for passenger traffic and North Lakhimpur-Murkongselek section has been commissioned for goods traffic. With this, the entire Rangiya – Murkongselek and Balipara - Bhalukpong (510 Km) Metre Gauge line along the North Bank of Brahmaputra has been converted to Broad Gauge.