Madras-Dhanushkodi Mainline

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The Madras-Dhanushkodi Mainline is the name of the South Indian Railway(SIR) metre gauge(MG) Mainline connecting Madras to the Pamban Branch Railway to Dhanushkodi with a length of 425 miles(684km) [1]. At Dhanushkodi there was a connection to the ‘Indo-Ceylon Ferry Service’.

Madras-Tuticorin Mainline was the earlier description to the Mainline from Madras to Dhanushkodi. This description also included the ‘Tuticorin Branch Line’ from Madura to Tuticorin, a further 99 miles(159km).[2].

Madras- Dhanushkodi Mainline

Madras Railway Map 1909, south section

The following is based on the “Administration Report on Railways 1918”[2] and the "Marvels of the South Indian Railway 1859-1951"[3].

Gauge Note

Part of this Mainline was originally built as broad gauge(BG) by the Great Southern of India Railway(GSIR) with the construction of a BG line from Negapatam via Tanjore and Trichinopoly; then planned onwards to Tuticorin. Construction of this line commenced in 1859 reaching Tanjore, 1861 and Trichinopoly, 1862.

In 1874 the South Indian Railway(SIR) was formed from merger of the Carnatic Railway and Great Southern of India Railway. It was decided that the SIR would use the metre gauge(MG) and this required the conversion of BG lines already constructed and in service.

The BG line from Negapatam via Tanjore to Trichinopoly was converted to MG in 1875

Further Information

See South Indian Railway