Guwahati, Jan 24 (PTI) Though 125 years have passed, the Coaching Maintenance Depot at Silchar is still used for the maintenance of coaches and rolling stock.
The facility, one of the oldest coaching maintenance depots in the country and the first in the northeastern region, is linked to the beginning of train services during British rule in the region, railway spokesperson Sabyasachi De said on Tuesday.
The depot started functioning in 1898 under Assam-Bengal Railway.
Coaching Maintenance Depots are primarily responsible for the maintenance of rolling stock, passenger-carrying vehicles and other types of coaches such as DEMU and EMU.
Currently, this is one of the three coach maintenance depots under the Lumding division of Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) and plays an important role in Assam-Mizoram and Assam-Manipur Railway connectivity, he said.
The depot has a covered shed of 85m length and 18m width, equipped with upgraded maintenance infrastructure having two maintenance bays and two examination pits, De said.
It plays a vital role in the maintenance of all local and long-distance trains operating from Silchar Railway station.
The Assam Bengal Railway route that reached Badarpur via Karimganj of the then Cachar district from Sylhet district had opened to traffic on December 4, 1896.
It was the first time that a part of the northeast was directly linked by rail with the rest of India.
This route later extended up to Lumding via Haflong and was popularly called the Badarpur–Lumding Hill section.
This necessitated the setting up of a coaching depot for the maintenance of coaches in the area, De pointed out.
Initially, it started functioning as a metre gauge coaching depot. In 2015, it was converted to a broad gauge facility, De added. PTI DG MM MM