Punjaub Railway

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Punjaub Railway is also spelt as the Punjab Railway in some documents
– this was one of the railways of the Scinde Railway Company - see separate page for further information on the formation and development of the Company


  • The spelling of “Punjaub Railway” is variable. This railway was formed in period from 1855 to 1860's and the spelling of the Company names reflect that period.
  • “Punjaub” is the spelling adopted in the legislation of the time – see "Government Statute Law Repeals 2012" pages 134-135, paragraphs 3.78-3.83 [1]."
  • “Punjab” is the spelling adopted in the "Imperial Gazeteer of India" of 1908 which we normally take as the definitive spelling

However in regard to this railway we have adopted the spelling Punjaub


The Scinde Railway Company was first established by deed of settlement in March 1855 and incorporated by the ‘Scinde Railway Act’ of Parliament in July 1855 after which a contract was entered with the East India Company in December 1855 for the construction of the ‘'Scinde Railway’ for a line from Karachi to Kotri. This was followed by further developments which included the establishment of the ’Indus Flotilla’ steamers to connect Kotri to Multan.

The Punjaub Railway was formed at the instigation of the Scinde Railway Company to enable "the construction and working of lines in the Punjab from Moultan(Multan) to Lahore and Umritisir(Amritsar), and thence to Delhi - total, about 490 miles. Capital - 4,000,000 Pounds'. Rate of Interest Guaranteed - 5 per cent on 1,500,000 Pounds, the amount at present authorised to be raised." [2] Like the Scinde Railway, the ‘Punjaub Railway’ was built to broad gauge and was one of the original guaranteed railways.

File:Scinde Railway Company - Lines


The Chairman of the Scinde Railway Company, Mr W P Andrews in March 1856 responded to a suggestion from the Government of Bombay proposing to undertake necessary surveys of the line “from Mooltan to Lahore and Umritsir” (Amritsar) [3]

The survey was undertaken by Mr T A Yarrow, Consulting Engineer to the Scinde Railway Company and William Arthur Brunton, Superintending Engineer, Punjaub Railway Survey and submitted in his report dated 15 Jun 1857, for a single line railway of 5 feet 6 inches ‘uniting the towns of Umritsir to Lahore (248 miles, 60 chains) and Lahore to Mooltan (216 miles, 60 chains)’ [4] The town names in this Report use the spelling in use at that time


The lines from Multan to Khanewal, 29 miles(47km) and Khanewal to Lahore, 177 miles(285 km) opened in stageas and completed by Apr 1865. This connected to the Lahore to Amritsar line, 32 miles(51km) that had opened in Apr 1862.. Giving a total line length of 238 miles(383km) between Multan and Amritsar [5].

Later Developments

The ‘Delhi Railway’ was authorised in 1862 as a further concession was granted to the Scinde Railway Company’. This being an extension of the line from Umritisir(Amritsar) to Delhi, linking to the East Indian Railway(EIR) at Ghaziabad (just 13 miles(21km) from Delhi, this line opened in stages from 1867-70.

In 1870 the ‘Punjaub Railway’ was merged with the Scinde Railway, the Indus Flotilla and the Delhi Railway to form the Scinde, Punjaub & Delhi Railway.

In 1886, the contracts expired and responsibility for the railway was transferred entirely to the Government of India(GoI). The GoI merged the ‘Scinde, Punjaub & Delhi Railway’ with other smaller state-owned railways to create the ‘North Western Railway’.

Further Information

See Scinde Railway Company, Scinde Railway, Indus Flotilla and Delhi Railway

and Scinde, Punjaub & Delhi Railway following amalgamation in 1870 until 1886

and North Western Railway from 1886 when the line became part of the ‘NWR Mainline’

Historical books online