The International Steam Pages
Steam in Pakistan 2006
The following report from Thomas Kautzor is extracted/adapted from the Yahoo Pakistan Railways Group - firstname.lastname@example.org.
On January 26th 2006, I visited Mughalpura Workshops in Lahore and found following steam locomotives:
0-4-2 Scinde Punjab & Delhi Ry. No. 1872 EAGLE (R. Stephenson & Co.
1872/1871) preserved at the entrance;
A steam roller is also preserved at entrance, and various steam cranes
were undergoing maintenance.
I did not have the time to look for the following locomotives, which had earlier been reported stored for preservation at the Electric Locomotive Stores Depot, Mughalpura, and was unable to find out anything about their situation from workshops staff:
4-6-2 XB 450 LORD WELLESLEY (Armstrong Withworth 1065/1930);
From there I went to the Punjab Irrigation Dept. Sikhanwala Quarry
workshops at Nishtar Abad station, the next station after Lalian towards Shahinabad
Jn. / Sargodha Jn. There I found in storage the following items:
The workshops are linked to the short branch between the station and the quarry, where more flat wagons were reportedly stored, but the tracks outside of the workshops are heavily overgrown. According to a former locomotive driver the railway has been out of use since 1993 and the rocks transported by road. One of the engines was last steamed in January of 1994 for a group of British enthusiasts. I was able to look at the site and take pictures while one of the two security guards on duty called the engineer in charge from his office at the quarry. When he came he told me I would need to get an authorization from the Irrigation Dept. at Sargodha, but I had already finished what I came for.
During the following week I took part in the GlobeSteam Pakistan tour 2006, where we used the PR active steam fleet based at Peshawar and Rawalpindi. These are:
On Sunday 5th February 2006, after the departure of the group, I
travelled on the Gandhara Steam Safari from Rawalpindi Cantt. (dep. 14:30) to Golra Sharif
Jn. (15:00/16:15), were there is enough time to view
the exhibits of the PR Heritage Point, before returning to Rawalpindi (arr. 17:00). The train consisted of HG/S 2303 and two
coaches, full of families and school classes. This train runs every Sunday, but seats need to be booked in advance due to high demand.
The one-way fare is Rs. 40 (U$ 0.67), a return ticket costs Rs. 50 (U$ 0.84).
One was the Changa Manga forestry railway, which is located 70 km south of Lahore. The railway belongs to the Punjab Forestry Department and contrary to earlier reports, it is still used mainly to transport wood cut in the adjoining forest. From the yard a 2 km. line heads east and a 4 km. line heads north. Both lines are joined at their middle by a connecting line. Across the road from the yard is a triangle with a passenger station, and there is another triangle with a station on the line heading north where there is an amusement park. At the time of our visit wood was being cut close to the yard, with temporary track laid from the east line. Two trains are used for transporting logs, one steam and the other diesel, both with 5 to 7 flat bogie wagons. These head out at 8 a.m. and operations end around 3 p.m.. Passenger operations take place on Saturday afternoons on a charter basis and Sundays for the general public, using the diesel locomotive. The adult fare is Rs. 20, the child fare Rs. 10 and price for a charter train is Rs. 400 (U$ 6.69). Charters can be arranged through the Assistant Manager, Mr. Muhammad Rafi at 049-4381023.
Motive power consists of 3 steam and 3 diesel locomotives:
0-4-0WT 1763 (Andrew Barclay 1763/1923, boiler PB 1219, supplied via
Parry Engineering, Calcutta) serviceable;
Rolling stock for the passenger trains comprises:
All of the coaches are built on the basis of bogie logging wagons, of which there are 15 to 20 in use. There are also some 4-wheel trucks to transport the temporary tracks, as well as a 4-wheel flat wagon and a 4-wheel hand-trolley used by the track-laying crew.
The other industrial railway that I visited was at the Khewra Salt Mine Tourist Resort, in the Salt Range near Malakwal. The mine was opened in 1916/17 and belongs to the Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC). The electric mining railway was in use until 1998, nowadays it is used to ferry visitors 3 km. inside the mine which was opened as a tourist resort in 2002. The trackbed of the former lines to the Khewra railway station can still be identified, but the only track left outside the mine goes across a large bridge to the shed.
The train consisted of a 4-wheel electric locomotive, 9 covered 4-wheel coaches and 2 closed 4-wheel coaches. Another electric locomotive was stored inside the shed, together with a closed green 4-wheel coach with upholstered seats. Outside of the shed there were 14 more covered coaches, one open coach, one closed coach and a 4-wheel water tank wagon.
The mine can easily be reached from the Lilla interchange on the Rawalpindi Lahore Motorway, it is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., entry costs U$ 6.00 for tourists, Rs. 30 for Pakistani visitors and there is a tourist guesthouse within the complex.