The train passes through the Punjab and Himachal Pradesh borders. It is one of the most frequently used modes of transport between Nangal and Bhakkar. The Bhakar-Nangal train service was started in 1948. The need for a special train was identified during the construction of the Bhakar-Nangal Dam. At that time there was no other means of transportation between Nangal and Bhakar. Therefore, a railway track was laid on the route to facilitate the transportation of heavy machinery and personnel.
Initially, the train was powered by steam engines. However, in 1953, three new engines imported from the United States began to be used. Although Indian Railways has introduced five new model engines since then, it is noteworthy that the special train is still operating on its 60-year-old engine. Coaches made in Karachi are also the focus of the train. The seats are also made of wooden benches from the colonial period.
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The heritage Bhakar-Nangal train travels a distance of 13 km through the Shivalik Hills. Going to Nehla Station leads to Nangal Dam in Punjab. It is reported that 18 to 20 liters of diesel per hour is used in the train. The Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) has decided to keep the service free, despite the high cost. Therefore, passengers should not take tickets. In addition to the daily commuters, the BBMB Staff, school children and visitors still use the train service.
Authorities were reluctant to suspend the train once due to financial problems. But later the decision was changed. Thus, the Bhakar-Nangal train, which is a part of history, is considered as the only way to travel in the country legally without a ticket.