It has been 150 years since Bangalore appeared on the railway map of India. It was on August 1, 1864 that Jolarpet was connected to Bangalore Cantonment.
According to information provided by South Western Railway, the first train journey in south India took place on May 28, 1856 from Royapuram to Wallajah Road. Eight years later, Madras Railway Company opened the Jolarpettai-Bangalore Cantonment branch line. The Madras-Bangalore Mail was launched the same year.
In 1862, the line reached Renigunta and then to Raichur in 1871.
The Yeshwanthpur-Doddaballapur Meter Gauge line was opened in 1892.
In 1944, the rail network was nationalised. On April 14, 1951, the three major networks administered by the erstwhile Madras and Southern Maratha Railway, the Southern Indian Railway and Mysore State Railway were joined to form Southern Railway.
Due to historical reasons, the headquarters of the erstwhile Mysore State Railway was located in Mysore though Bangalore was the hub of operations. To improve administration and enhance monitoring, Bangalore Division was inaugurated on July 27, 1981.
No rail museum
The city does not have a museum to showcase its rail journey. Till a few weeks ago, memorabilia was being exhibited on Platform One of Bangalore City Railway Station. At present, visitors can go to Platform Five where two galleries exhibit cartoons and paintings related to trains.
The galleries had no visitors on Friday. Staff in both galleries said that visitors show up only when trains are delayed.