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The Northeast Frontier Railway has its historical roots in the former Assam Railways & Trading Company, Assam Bengal Railways and Eastern Bengal Railways. The Assam Bengal Railways had the largest contribution to make in the formation of the present-day N. F. Railway.

Assam Railway & Trading Company laid the first Railway line in Assam as early as 1882 between Amolapatty (Dibrugarh) and Dinjam Stream – a length of 15 miles for transportation of tea and extended upto Makum collieries at Margherita in 1884. The Company also established the first passenger Railway system in Assam under the name Dibru Sadiya Railway. The Eastern Bengal Railway constructed the sections Haldibari - Siliguri, Barsoi - Kishanganj, Manihari – Katihar- Kasaba and opened these sometime before 1900.

During the reorganisation of Railway zones in 1953, Assam Railway and Avadh - Tirhut Railway were merged to form the North Eastern Railway with headquarters at Gorakhpur. The N. F. Railway system was carved out of the North Eastern Railway on 15th January, 1958 and based at Maligaon, Guwahati at the foothill of Nilachal 'Parbat', the abode of Goddess Kamakhya. N. F. Railway is the smallest of the 9 zones on the Indian Railways, but has the unique distinction of serving as many as ten States of the Indian Union, namely Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram. Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura and West Bengal. Besides, it also serves as a rail-head for the Himalayan kingdoms of Nepal and Bhutan and provides interchange facilities with Bangladesh Railway. (in the photo: an elephant that was run over by a train was being lifted from the track in NFR.)

picture by fantafabulous

NF Railway has got 5 Divisions viz. Katihar – covering the states of Bihar, Sikkim and Part West Bengal including the prestigious Darjeeling –Himalayan Railway, World Heritage Site, stretching for a route length of 370 Km in BG, 406 Km. in MG and 87 Km in NG; Alipurduar Jn. – covering the states of Assam and West Bengal, stretching for a route length of 218 Km in BG and 477 Km. in MG; Rangiya - covering the states of Arunachal Pradesh and Assam stretching for a route length of 319 Km in BG and 652 Km. in MG; Lumding– covering the states of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura stretching for a route length of 360 Km in BG and 529 Km. in MG; and Tinsukia – covering the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh ans Nagaland, stretching for a route length of 490 Km in BG and 21 Km. in MG. (in the photo: Dibrugarh railway statio.)

picture by fantafabulous

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