Thursday, November 5, 2009

Nomenclature of Indian Railways


Bholu is the mascot of the Indian Railways, adopted in 2003.Trains are sorted into various categories which dictate the number of stops along their route, the priority they enjoy on the network, and the fare structure. Each express train is identified by a four-digit number - the first digit indicates the zone that operates the train, the second the division within the zone that controls the train and is responsible for its regular maintenance and cleanliness, and the last two digits are the train's serial number.

For super-fast trains, the first digit is always '2', the second digit is the zone, the third is the division and only the last digit is the serial number within the division. Trains travelling in opposite directions along the same route are usually labelled with consecutive numbers. Most express trains also have a unique name attached to them which are usually exotic and are taken from landmarks, famous people, rivers and so on. Some notable examples are:

Charminar Express between Hyderabad and Chennai, after the Charminar monument in Hyderabad.

Ashram Express between Ahmedabad and New Delhi, after Mahatma Gandhi's Sabarmati Ashram

Gitanjali Express between Mumbai CST and Howrah (Kolkata), after Rabindranath Tagore's famous work.

Parasuram Express between Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram, after Parasuram, a mythological character.

Prayag Raj Express between Allahabad and New Delhi, after Prayag, a sacred pilgrimage spot and the ancient name of Allahabad.

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