Secunderabad Railway Station Awarded Platinum Rating by IGBC–CII

SECUNDERABAD: Secunderabad Railway Station (Central Station) is one of the biggest and busiest railway stations in the Indian railway system. It is the main railway terminus and a major commuter hub in the Hyderabad Urban Area which is the capital of Telangana state, the main one of the three major railway stations serving the city, the other two being Kachiguda Railway Station and Deccan-Nampalli Railway Station. Secunderabad Railway Station is the busiest station is the zonal headquarters of South Central Railway and the divisional headquarters of the Secunderabad Division.

Secunderabad Railway Station has earned the distinction of being awarded the highest “Platinum Rating” Certification as Green Railway Station by the Indian Green Building Council – Confederation of Industry (IGBC-CII). The rating takes Secunderabad Railway Station to the highest standard of Certification as Green Railway Station. Earlier, Secunderabad Railway Station was holding the Silver Rating from IGBC – CII and has now moved up the ladder to attain the highest norm of Platinum Certification.

Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav, General Manager was instrumental in drawing the plan to meet the norms for Platinum Rating of Green Railway Station Certification for Secunderabad. Shri Amit Varadan, Divisional Railway Manager, Secunderabad Division and his team of officials undertook the task to fulfill required modalities for attaining the achievement.

The IGBC-CII, with the support of Environment Directorate of Indian Railways has developed the Green Railway Stations Rating system to facilitate adoption of Green Concepts, thereby reducing the adverse environmental impacts due to station operation & maintenance and enhance the overall commuter experience. The rating system helps to address National priorities like water conservation, handling of waste, energy efficiency, reduced used of fossil fuel, lesser dependency on usage of virgin materials and health & well being of occupants. The six modules involved in the task are – sustainable station facility; health; hygiene and sanitation; energy efficiency; water efficiency; smart and green initiative; innovation & development. Secunderabad Railway Station was evaluated on these norms and had earlier scored 68 points to attain the Silver Rating, and has now been awarded the Platinum Rating with a score of 88 points in re-certification.

SNo Modules Available Points Implemented & Achieved Earlier Additional Points under Re-Certification
1 Sustainable Station Facility 24 18 04
2 Health, Hygiene & Sanitation 21 11 08
3 Energy Efficiency 21 17 02
4 Water Efficiency 16 09 03
5 Smart & Green Initiatives 12 11 01
6 Innovation & Development 06 02 02
   Total 100 (68+20)   88

Secunderabad Railway Station holds a total area of 13.34 acres and has got several ‘Green’ inputs which enabled the Certification Rating. There are 408 different species of trees available in the station area, organic fertilizers and pesticides are being used, Solar Photo Voltaic installation cover 41.2 % of the exposed station roof area, 500 Kwp Solar Plant has been installed in 2016, which generates 2500 units of power per day, accounting for 37 % of Energy requirements of the station, leading to savings of Rs. 72.92 Lakh annually. The lawn and shade area is to the extent of 12876.00 Square Meters, covering around 55% of total area. With a total number of 4864 fixtures, Secunderabad station is 100% LED lit.

Amongst the other Green initiatives in practice at Secunderabad Railway Station are, a Sewerage Treatment Plant with a capacity of 5 Lakh Liters per day, availability of Central waste collection for hazardous, wet and dry substances, bottle crushing machine, CO2 sensors provided at AC waiting halls, certified Green products used for Cleanliness and maintenance, energy and water audit conducted once in three years, 100% hot water through Solar Power plant (1600 Liters per day), Rain water harvesting pits at circulating area and sub metering for energy and water usage. Additionally, the high point here is provision of smart passenger services as 100% Digital Cashless payments, free High Speed WiFi facility for passengers, Child Help Desk, Pre-Paid auto/taxi stand and a Help Desk. Station aesthetics enhanced with Cheriyal painting murals. Potable drinking water has been provided covering entire station premises. All the ten platforms of the station are connected with escalators and lifts have been provided on either ends of platforms.

Secunderabad Railway Station – some Historical Perspectives from Pre-Independence Nizam era!

Secunderabad railway station (station code:SC), is a major intercity railway station and a commuter rail hub in the Hyderabad Urban Area. It is located in the heart of the city of Hyderabad and falls under the South Central Railway zone of Indian Railways. Built in 1874, by the Nizam of Hyderabad State, during the British era, this station was the main station of the Nizam’s Railway, until the opening of Kachiguda Railway Station in 1916. Later on, its operation was taken over by the Indian Railways in 1951, when the Nizam’s Railway was nationalized. The main portico and concourse are influenced by Asaf Jahi style architecture. The station building resembles a fort and is one of the tourist attractions in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.

The station is well connected by rail to all parts of India. 229 trains arrive at, or depart from, the station, daily, transporting over one lakh sixty thousand (160,000) passengers daily to their destinations across the country. Situated on the Vijayawada – Wadi(main line of SCR) and Secunderabad-Manmad railway lines, it is the zonal headquarters station of the South Central Railway (SCR), and also the divisional headquarters station of Secunderabad Division of the SCR. The station has also achieved the ISO-9001 Certification for quality management in ticket booking, parcel and luggage booking and train management of platform. In recent years, the railways has proposed to upgrade it into a world-class station, with emphasis on vertical expansion of the complex. It is connected to almost all the parts of the twin cities (Hyderabad and Secunderabad) by the Hyderabad MMTS,Telangana State Road Transport Corporation’s buses and Hyderabad Metro rail making it convenient for passengers to commute to and from the station.

The proposal for constructing Secunderabad Railway Station was raised in 1870 when the Nizam of Hyderabad State decided to connect the state with the rest of Indian sub-continent. The Nizam’s Railways was formed as a private company and construction of the Secunderabad-Wadi line started in the same year. This line would connect Hyderabad with the Great Indian Peninsular Railway’s (the railway company owned by the British India) main line at Wadi Junction. The Nizam provided all the expenses for the construction.

After four years, the Secunderabad-Wadi Line was finished along with the Secunderabad Railway Station on 9 October 1874. This was the first time that railways were introduced in Hyderabad. The main portico and concourse of the station were influenced by Asaf Jahi architecture. The station building resembles a fort and is one of the tourist attractions in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.  The Nizam State took over the Nizam’s Railway and the state owned Nizam’s Guaranteed State Railway was formed in 1879. In 1871 the Secunderabad station was connected to the Singareni Collieries Company by a 146 miles (235 km) line. The Secunderabad-Wadi line was extended to Vijayawada Junction as the Vijayawada-Wadi line in 1889. The following year, the broad gauge connection between Vijayawada Junction and Chennai Central opened. This made rail travel  between Hyderabad and Chennai (the Madras) possible.

The Hyderabad-Godavari Valley Railway Company was established in 1900 with the opening of the Manmad-Secunderabad metre gauge line. However, the company eventually merged into Nizam’s State Railways in 1930. In 1916 another railway terminus, Kachiguda Railway Station, was constructed as the headquarters of Nizam’s Guaranteed State Railway and also to regulate the traffic at Secunderabad. Diesel rail cars by Ganz were tried out for the first time in Hyderabad State, by Nizam’s State Railway, in 1939.

On 5 November 1951, the Nizam’s Guaranteed State Railway was nationalized by the Government of India and merged into the government owned Indian Railways under the Ministry of Railways. The Secunderabad Station was assigned to the Central Railways zone of Indian Railways with Mumbai CST as its headquarters. In 1966 a new railway zone, the South Central Railway, was formed with Secunderabad as its headquarters, it also being the headquarters of the Secunderabad Division. The zonal headquarters of South Central Railway, called Rail Nilayam, was constructed in 1972. The divisional headquarters of the Secunderabad Division was built in 1980.

In 1967 the Ajanta Express was introduced between Kachiguda Railway Station and Manmad (via Secunderabad). With an average speed of 42.5 km/h it was the fastest metre gauge train in India when introduced. In 1969 the Golconda Express was introduced which would travel between Secunderabad and Vijayawada Junction. At that time it was the fastest steam-hauled train in the country with an average speed of 58 km/h. and was later extended up to Guntur. To facilitate effective operational and administrative control the Secunderabad Division was split into two divisions in February 1978: Secunderabad Division and Hyderabad Division.

The early standalone computerised reservation system began its operation at Secunderabad in July 1989. But, with the introduction of the Computerized Passenger Reservation System (PRS) at Secunderabad Station by SCR, from 30 September 1989, the rail reservations at Secunderabad were made easy. This system was later linked to New Delhi, Howrah, Mumbai and Chennai in 1997, 1998, 1999 and 1999 respectively. This version was before the CONCERT system of reservation was developed to interconnect the stations. CONCERT was developed at Secunderabad in September 1994 but the first prototype of the CONCERT passenger reservation system was not implemented at the station until January 1995.

The Secunderabad–Mahbubnagar metre gauge section was converted to broad gauge in 1993, breaking one of the important north-south meter gauge freight connections in India towards the north from Secunderabad. The same year the Secunderabad Station was electrified towards Kazipet and Vijayawada Junction. The electric locomotive shed in South Lallaguda (near Secunderabad Station), with a capacity to maintain 100 electric locomotives, was built in 1995.

The Rajdhani Express which connects the state capitals of India with the National Capital of India was proposed in Andhra Pradesh between Secunderabad and the Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station in the 2001 Indian Rail Budget. The Secunderabad Rajdhani Express was introduced on 27 February 2002. The Hyderabad Multi-Modal Transport System (MMTS), the first of its kind in Andhra Pradesh, was introduced in 2003 with two lines: Lingampally – Hyderabad Railway Station with 13 services, and Lingampally Railway Station – Secunderabad with 11 services each day (initially). Another line was constructed between Secunderabad and Falaknuma Railway Station. On 30 June 2004 the SCR operated the last metre gauge train on the Nizamabad–Manoharabad line bringing to an end the metre gauge services which started in the 1930s on the Secunderabad–Manmad line of the Nizam’s State Railways (formerly Hyderabad-Godavari Valley Railways). This was to facilitate the conversion of the track to broad gauge program of Indian Railways. This line was open to traffic by 7 February 2005 after its conversion to broad gauge, allowing railway traffic on the Secunderabad–Manmad stretch of the Kachiguda Railway Station – Manmad line.

The South Central Railway introduced the high-speed goods train, the Himalaya Special, from Secunderabad on 7 November 2007. Intended for speedy transportation of goods such as coal, this train was expected to run at 100 km/h. In the 2008–2009 Indian railway budget Secunderabad station was planned to upgrade to world-class facilities. The first Duronto Express for the South Central Railway was on 14 March 2010 between Secunderabad and Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station, and was flagged off by the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, K. Rosaiah, from the Secunderabad Station.