Cassian Baliarsingh

Trains are one of the most affordable and economical means of communication in India. However, you will be surprised to know that this particular train in India has been providing free rides to all passengers for the past 73 years.

Well, you read it right! The Bhakra-Nangal train which runs between Bhakra-Nangal along Punjab and Himachal Pradesh borders has been providing free rides to its passengers since Independence.

Around 300 passengers get free rides every day. People of at least 25 villages depend on this train for daily commute.

According to reports, the train was originally started to transport workers who were involved in the construction work of Bhakra-Nangal dam. However, it continues to run and transport passengers till today since Independence.

The train departs Nangal Railway Station at 7:05 am and reaches Bhakra at 8:20am. It again leaves Bhakra and returns to Nangal. Its daily routine is back and forth between Nangal and Bhakra. 

This train is of most help to school children, college goers and daily labourers who depend on it for their daily commute.

The train is known for representing the region’s history, culture and heritage. The Bhakra Beas Management (BBMB), which runs the train, had once planned to end the free service due to the heavy cost.

However, they once again decided to continue the free ride to spread a message to the younger generation and other inhabitants to learn more about their region, culture, history, and heritage.

This is India’s one of the noblest initiatives.