Nepal Railway Company Limited

The Nepal Railway Company Ltd. (in short Nepal Railway), reporting mark: NRW / ने. रे) is a state-owned company under Department of Railways (DORW) which operates passenger train services in Nepal.[1] Currently it operates passenger transport service on the 33 kilometres (21 mi) line from Jainagar, India to Kurtha, Nepal.

Nepal Railway Company Ltd.
Nepal Railway
Native name
नेपाल रेल्वे कम्पनी
TypeGovernment sector
IndustryRail transport
PredecessorNepal Government Railway and
Nepal Janakpur–Jainagar Railway
FounderChandra Shumsher
Area served
Key people
Redeyes (Director General)
Niranjan Jha (CEO of Nepal Railway Company Limited)
OwnerGovernment of Nepal
ParentDepartment of Railways


A Nepal Railway locomotive in 1927 during the reign of Rana PM Chandra SJBR

There were three railway lines in Nepal, all narrow gauge 2 ft 6 in (762 mm) lines:

  • Nepal Government Railway (NGR)
  • Nepal Janakpur Jaynagar Railway (NJJR)
  • Koshi Railway

Nepal Government RailwayEdit

The first railway in Nepal was the Nepal Government Railway (NGR), a 2 ft 6 in (762 mm) narrow gauge railway, built by the British in 1927, during the Rana period.[2] The railway connected Raxaul in British India with Amlekhganj in the Kingdom of Nepal.[3] This 39-kilometre-long (24 mi) line allowed people from different areas of the country to reach Amlekhganj, and helped move heavy vehicles to Bhimphedi. It was then possible to reach Kathmandu from Bhimphedi on foot. The railway possessed seven steam locomotives, 12 coaches and 82 wagons.[4] It operated steam-powered Garratt locomotives manufactured by Beyer, Peacock & Company of England.[5]

Nepal Janakpur Jaynagar RailwayEdit

The second railway in the country was the Nepal Janakpur–Jainagar Railway (NJJR), a 2 ft 6 in (762 mm) narrow gauge railway, built by the British in 1937, during the Rana period. This 28-mile-long (45 km) track was built to carry timber from the then heavily forested areas of Janakpur in the Kingdom of Nepal to Jainagar in British India.[6] The railway was later extended to Bijalpura.

Koshi RailwayEdit

The Koshi Railway was built in 1957 to carry stones and gravels near from Dharan and Chatara to the new building site of the Koshi Barrage. The rail line was linked with Birpur and Bhimnagar in India. The material and machineries for the Koshi Barrage site used to import from this route from Bathnaha, which was also connected with Jogbani.[7]

The Raxaul–Amlekhganj railway track was operational until 1965. It was closed down after opening of the Tribhuvan Highway.[8] The railway track from Raxaul was converted to 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) broad gauge by Indian Railways to connect Sirsiya (Birganj) Inland Container Depot (ICD). The railway became fully operational in 2005, though certain segments were used as early as 2002. It is used to move containers and other cargo to and from the Kolkata port and other places in India. It is the most important entry point for imports into China, and is essential for Nepal's commerce and trade. Birganj is located 700 km (430 mi) from the Kolkata port by railway.

After a washout of the railway embankment and two bridges, the track between Janakpur and Bijayalpura (22 km railway line) was closed in 2001. The remaining Janakpur–Jainagar railway track was converted to 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) broad gauge in 2018. The extension to Bardibas remains under construction.[6]

Current Railway LinesEdit

Jaynagar–Bardibas railwayEdit

INR Ter. (JYG)
NRW Ter. (JYG)
Jaladh khola
Bighi river
Khutta Pipradhi
Rato river

Jaynagar–Bardibas railway line (68 km or 42 mi) project is being completed in three phases.

  1. Jaynagar–Janakpur–Kurtha line - completed:
    This 35 km or 22 mi track is already complete and trains are running on the regularly basis.[9]
  2. Kurtha–Bijalpura:
    This 17 km or 11 mi track is also completed. Tracks has been laid and station buildings has been constructed.[9]
  3. Bijalpura–Bardibas:
    The final 16 km or 9.9 mi route section has still not started the construction as the land acquisition by Government of Nepal is not yet complete as of April 2022.[10]

Bathnaha-Biratnagar RailwayEdit

Of the total 18.6 km or 11.6 mi length of Bathnaha–Biratnagar railway line, the 10 km (6.2 mi) of line construction has been completed and remaining 8.6 km is under construction as of April 2022.[11][12][13]

Planned & under-construction railway linesEdit

See 8 different India–Nepal cross-border rail lines, some of which are complete and others are either under planning or being constructed.[14]

China–Nepal Railway, planned 72 km line which will link Kathmandu with Shigatse in Tibet, crossing the China–Nepal border at GyirongRasuwa.[15]


In August 2012, a serious incident occurred when a locomotive ran away without bogies while a driver was putting in oil. The locomotive ran from Jainagar to Janakpur at speeds far exceeding the restrictions on the line, resulting in the normally two-and-a-half hours journey of 29 km (18 mi) taking only 45 minutes. The staff at Janakpur diverted the locomotive engine onto a damaged track where its wheels became stuck in the ground and it came to a full stop without causing any injuries.[16][17]


Nepal Railway plans to extend its service beyond Janakpur in future. It is going to operate to Bijayalpura very soon,[when?] up to where infrastructures are operational and up to Bardibas in the near future where rail infrastructures are under construction by Department of Railways.[citation needed]


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "नेपाल सरकार भौतिक पुर्वाधार तथा यातायात मन्त्रालय रेल विभाग विशालनगर, काठमाण्डौ". Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  2. ^ Aitchison, Sir Charles Umpherston (1929). A Collection of Treaties, Engagements and Sanads Relating to India and Neighbouring Countries, Volume 14. Government of India Central Publication Branch. p. 47. Retrieved 29 July 2013.
  3. ^ "Railway in Nepal and it's [sic] scope". 20 February 2018. Archived from the original on 4 August 2018. Retrieved 4 August 2018.
  4. ^ "Railroads". A Country Study: Nepal. The Library of Congress. 22 March 2011. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  5. ^ "Garratt Locomotives produced by Beyer Peacock". Retrieved 29 July 2013.
  6. ^ a b "The Janakpur Railway - The longest railway line of Nepal". Retrieved 4 August 2018.
  7. ^ "report on the National Transport System for Nepal published in 1965" (PDF). world bank. 1965. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  8. ^ A National Transport System for Nepal (PDF). Washington, D.C.: World Bank. June 1965. p. 22. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  9. ^ a b "India- Nepal railway service: The projects, route, cost in 10 points". The Times of India. 1 April 2022. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  10. ^ "Train services to restart on Jayanagar-Janakpur Dham-Kurtha section". The Pioneer. 1 April 2022. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  11. ^ "Jaynagar-Kurtha Railway brings modernization in Nepal's railway connection, says Nepal Minister". ANI. 22 October 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  12. ^ "IRCON invites tender for civil works at Biratnagar Station on Jogbani (India) to Biratnagar (Nepal) Railway Line". Metro Rail News. 9 April 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  13. ^ "Construction work resumes on Katahari-Bathnaha railway line". The Kathmandu Post. 27 September 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  14. ^ How poor rail connectivity is acting as a hindrance to India's Act East policy, Economic Times, 20 October 2020.
  15. ^ Hu, Yongqi (22 June 2018). "Railway project to link Tibet, Nepal". China Daily. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  16. ^ "Train engine from India completes journey to Nepal sans driver". 8 August 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  17. ^ "Train engine from India completes journey to Nepal sans drive". 8 August 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2020.

External linksEdit