The longest railway tunnels in India

The list of long railway tunnels in India has seen considerable changes in the last quarter century.

We start with the Wikipedia article as it was on Nov 16, 2015:

List of rail tunnels in India by length
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is a list of the longest rail tunnels in India. In considering tunnels for this section, tunnels of underground metro railways have not been counted. Only tunnels on the main Indian Railways network longer than 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) have been listed.

Contents

Location

Most of the tunnels listed below are located in the Western Ghats, the only mountain range in the country that has good railway connectivity. There are longer tunnels that are under construction in the Himalayas in Jammu & Kashmir, as part of the USBRL Project.Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel, the 11.2 km long railway tunnel, passes through the Pir Panjal Range of middle Himalayas in Jammu and Kashmir. It is a part of its Udhampur – Srinagar – Baramulla rail link project, India’s longest railway tunnel and reduced the distance between Quazigund and Banihal .[1]

The list

Sl. No Name Length km Station Station State Divisions Year Coordination
1. Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel 11,215 metres (36,795 ft) Banihal Hillar Shahabad Jammu and Kashmir Northern Railway 2013 33.5617942°N 75.1988626°E
2. Karbude (T-35) 6,506 metres (21,345 ft) Ukshi Bhoke Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 17°6′9″N 73°24′59″E
3. Nathuwadi (T-6) 4,389 metres (14,400 ft) Karanjadi Diwan Khavati Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 17°53′37″N 73°23′14″E
4. Tike (T-39) 4,077 metres (13,376 ft) Ratnagiri Nivasar Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 16°58′48″N 73°23′42″E
5. Berdewadi (T-49) 4,000 metres (13,000 ft) Adavali Vilawade Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 16°53′43″N 73°36′22″E
6. Savarde (T-17) 3,429 metres (11,250 ft) Kamathe Savarde Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 17°27′35″N 73°31′19″E
7. Barcem (T-73) 3,343 metres (10,968 ft) Balli Canacona Goa Konkan Railway 1997 15°3′49″N 74°1′54″E
8. Karwar (T-80) 2,950 metres (9,680 ft) Karwar Harwada Karnataka Konkan Railway 1997
9. Chowk (T-3) 2,830 metres (9,280 ft) Panvel Karjat Maharashtra Central Railway 2006 18°55′5″N 73°17′10″E
10. Parchuri (T-27) 2,628 metres (8,622 ft) Sangameshwar Ukshi Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 17°9′30″N 73°28′57″E
11. Khowai (T-2) 2,472 metres (8,110 ft) Mungiabari Teliamura Tripura Northeast Frontier Railway 2008
12. Sangar (T-4) 2,445 metres (8,022 ft) Sangar Manwal Jammu and Kashmir Northern Railway 2005
13. Monkey Hill (T-25C) 2,156 metres (7,073 ft) Karjat Khandala Maharashtra Central Railway 1982
14. Aravali (T-21) 2,100 metres (6,900 ft) Aravali Sangameshwar Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997
15. Chiplun (T-16) 2,033 metres (6,670 ft) Chiplun Kamathe Maharashtra Konkan Railway 1997 17°29′45″N 73°31′50″E
16. Saranda(T-1) 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) Goilkera Sarenda Halt Jharkhand South Eastern Railway 1900 25°00′00″N 85°30′45″E

The alert Mumbaikar may ask “What about the Parsik tunnel?” It is only 1.3 km long and thus fails to qualify for the 2-km cutoff in the above list. It was not even the longest rail tunnel in India when it was opened in 1916, as the longer Saranda tunnel was already open since 1900. In undivided India the 3.92 km long Khojak tunnel in Baluchistan had been opened in 1892; for more details see :

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/08/28/the-rail-tunnel-in-baluchistan-which-appeared-on-a-currency-note/

This was in fact the longest rail tunnel in South Asia until the Konkan Railway opened in the late 1990s. As you can see from the above list, the majority of the long tunnels are on the Konkan route. The longest is the Karbude tunnel at 6.5 km. Some other longer tunnels opened in recent years the Sangar tunnel (2.4 km) on the Jammu-Udhampur section and the slightly longer Khowai tunnel on the Karimganj-Agartala section which is currently under conversion from MG to BG.

However, the longest tunnel on IR is the 11.2 km long Pir Panjal tunnel between Banihal and Qazigund which provides a link between Jammu and Srinagar. More details can be seen here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pir_Panjal_Railway_Tunnel

Opened in 2013, it will be part of the main route into the Kashmir valley once the problem-ridden section between Katra and Banihal is completed in the next few years. At the moment it serves a number of DMU passenger trains between Banihal and Baramulla (though some run only upto Budgam just north of Srinagar). These trains seem to be popular with the local people at the Banihal end as they save a lot of time and distance compared to the road route between Banihal and Qazigund. And the rail route is far less likely to be disrupted by snow than the road route.

It is likely to be the longest rail tunnel in India for a long time to come. There is expected to be a 7-km long tunnel on the uncompleted Katra-Banihal section which would take over the second spot from the Karbude tunnel. It will still exceed the two long road tunnels under construction at the Rohtang Pass and Patnitop, although the latter would also result in a considerable saving in distance on the Udhampur-Banihal road route:

“A 9.2 km long tunnel (Chenani-Nashri Tunnel) is being constructed about 2 km from Chenani town. The tunnel will be the India’s longest road tunnel when completed. It will reduce the distance from Chenani to Nashri by 31 km and reduce traffic jams on NH-1A that occur due to snowfall and avalanche in winter at Patnitop. About 2 km of the tunnel had been excavated by April 2012,[4] about 50% of the length had been excavated by January 2013.[5] and the excavation was completed in July 2015. The road in the tunnel may open in the second half of 2016.

In addition to the main road tunnel, there will be a smaller parallel escape tunnel for emergency services and extraction of smoke and persons in case of fire and accident.

The Southern portal (end) of the tunnel is at 33.0463°N 75.2793°E and the Northern portal (end) of the tunnel is at coordinates 33.1285°N 75.2928°E. When the tunnel is completed, the highway will no longer pass through Patnitop. The tunnel will reduce the length of the highway by 31 km and the highway will bypass Patnitop.”