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List of Railway Ministers of India

The Indian Railways (IR) was established on 6th May 1836. In India, the Indian Railways is a government-owned railway system that is under the authority of the Ministry of Railways and is responsible for the operation of the country's rail network. The Minister of Railways is the Indian government's chief executive officer in charge of India's Ministry of Railways. The Indian Railways are under the supervision of the railway minister, who is normally given cabinet-level status. Indian Railways, which employs more than a million people, is one of the largest employers in the world.

List of Railway Ministers of India

In the Central Government, the Railway Minister holds the Cabinet-level position of Minister of Railways. Asaf Ali served as the country's first Minister of Railways. He served in the position from September 2, 1946, until August 14, 1947. Although the job of Railway Minister was not explicitly defined at the time of British rule, the post was established in 1902.

Specifically, the Indian Railway Minister is in charge of all elements of rail transportation in the country, including planning, development, and operation. He reports to the Prime Minister and is responsible for the whole Ministry of Railways of the Indian Government. The Ministry of Railways is in charge of the state-owned Indian Railways, which is supervised by the Chairman of the Railway Board of Directors. The Ministry of Railways is also in charge of the Indian Railways.

The most important function of the Railway Minister is to compile and submit the railway budget to the Indian Parliament on an annual basis, which is a statutory requirement. The Indian Railways' annual financial statement is known as the railway budget. Following each election, a new group of Ministers is appointed to various posts within the government.

Some Facts of the Indian Railway

  • A train called the Red Hill Railway (constructed by Arthur Cotton to carry granite for road construction) travelled from Red Hills to the Chintadripet bridge in Madras in 1837, marking the beginning of the country's railway history.
  • Arthur Cotton constructed the Godavari Dam Building Railway at Dowleswaram in Rajahmundry in 1845 to provide stone for the construction of a dam across the Godavari River. The dam was completed in 1847.
  • On April 16, 1853, the Great Indian Peninsula Railway's first passenger train, driven by three steam engines (Sahib, Sindh, and Sultan), travelled 34 kilometres (21 miles) on 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 inches) broad gauge track from Bori Bunder (Mumbai) to Thane.
  • Indian Railways carried 6 crores (8.086 billion) passengers and moved 121.23 crores (1.2123 billion) tonnes of freight in the fiscal year ended March 2020, according to official figures. It operates 1 lakh (100,000) passenger trains every day, on both long-distance and suburban lines, and serves 7,325 stations across the country.
  • There are 4 types of gauges used by the Indian railway.
    • Broad gauge - 1,676 mm
    • Standard gauge - 1,435 mm
    • Meter gauge - 1,000 mm
    • Narrow gauge - 762 mm
  • Mail or express trains, which are the most prevalent trains, travel at an average speed of 6 kilometres per hour. Suburban EMUs travel at an average speed of 37.5 kilometres per hour. Ordinary passenger trains travel at an average speed of 33.5 kilometres per hour. It varies according to the railway; the Gatimaan Express has a maximum speed of 160 Kmph.
  • If the position of Minister of Railways is empty for an extended period of time, the office automatically becomes the responsibility of the Prime Minister.
  • The Indian Railways announced a national suspension of passenger train service on March 22, 2020, in order to battle the COVID-19 epidemic across the country.
  • Indian Railways has a significant amount of equity in 16 public sector undertakings (PSUs) and other companies that are involved in rail transportation in the country.

List of Railway Ministers from (1945 - 2022)

Minister Name Political Party Tenure of Office
Asaf Ali Indian National Congress (INC) 2nd September 1946 - 14th August 1947
John Mathai Indian National Congress (INC) 15th August 1947 - 22nd September 1948
N. Gopalaswami Ayyangar Indian National Congress (INC) 22nd September 1948 - 13th May 1952
Lal Bahadur Shastri Indian National Congress (INC) 13th May 1952 - 7th December 1956
Jagjivan Ram Indian National Congress (INC) 7th December 1956 - 10th April 1962
Swaran Singh Indian National Congress (INC) 10th April 1962 - 21st September 1963
H. C. Dasappa Indian National Congress (INC) 21st September 1963 - 8th June 1964
S. K. Patil Indian National Congress (INC) 9th June 1964 - 12th March 1967
C. M. Poonacha Indian National Congress (INC) 13th March 1967 - 14th February 1969
Ram Subhag Singh Indian National Congress (INC) 14th February 1969 - 4th November 1969
Panampilli Govinda Menon Indian National Congress (INC) 4th November 1969 - 18th February 1970
Gulzarilal Nanda Indian National Congress (INC) 18th February 1970 - 17th March 1971
K. Hanumanthaiya Indian National Congress (INC) 18th March 1971 - 22nd July 1972
T. A. Pai Indian National Congress (INC) 23rd July 1972 - 4th February 1973
Lalit Narayan Mishra Indian National Congress (INC) 5th February 1973 - 2nd January 1975
Kamalapati Tripathi Indian National Congress (INC) 11th February 1975 - 23rd March 1977
Madhu Dandavate Janata Party (JP) 26th March 1977 - 28th July 1979
T. A. Pai Janata Party (JP) 30th July 1979 - 13th January 1980
Kamalapati Tripathi Indian National Congress (INC) 14th January 1980 - 12th November 1980
Kedar Pandey Indian National Congress (INC) 12th November 1980 - 14th January 1982
Prakash Chandra Sethi Indian National Congress (INC) 15th January 1982 - 2nd September 1982
A. B. A. Ghani Khan Choudhury Indian National Congress (INC) 2nd September 1982 - 31st December 1984
Bansi Lal Indian National Congress (INC) 31st December 1984 - 4th June 1986
Mohsina Kidwai Indian National Congress (INC) 24th June 1986 - 21st October 1986
Madhavrao Scindia Indian National Congress (INC) 22nd October 1986 - 1st December 1989
George Fernandes Janata Dal (JD) 5th December 1989 - 10th November 1990
Janeshwar Mishra Samajwadi Janata Party (SJD) 21st November 1990 - 21st June 1991
Jaffer Sharief Indian National Congress (INC) 21st June 1991 - 16th October 1995
Ram Vilas Paswan Janata Dal (JD) 1st June 1996 - 19th March 1998
Nitish Kumar Samata Party (SP) 19th March 1998 - 5th August 1999
Ram Naik Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 6th August 1999 - 12th October 1999
Mamata Banerjee Trinamool Congress (TMC) 13th October 1999 - 15th March 2001
Nitish Kumar Janata Dal (JD) 20th March 2001 - 22nd May 2004
Lalu Prasad Yadav Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) 23rd May 2004 - 25th May 2009
Mamata Banerjee Trinamool Congress (TMC) 26th May 2009 - 19th May 2011
Dinesh Trivedi Trinamool Congress (TMC) 12th July 2011 - 14th March 2012
Mukul Roy Trinamool Congress (TMC) 20th March 2012 - 21st September 2012
C. P. Joshi Indian National Congress (INC) 22 nd September 2012 - 28th October 2012
Pawan Kumar Bansal Indian National Congress (INC) 28th October 2012 - 10th May 2013
C. P. Joshi Indian National Congress (INC) 11th May 2013 - 16th June 2013
Mallikarjun Kharge Indian National Congress (INC) 17th June 2013 - 25th May 2014
D. V. Sadananda Gowda Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 27th May 2014 - 10th November 2014
Suresh Prabhu Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 10th November 2014 - 3rd September 2017
Piyush Goyal Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 3rd September 2017 - 7th July 2021
Ashwini Vaishnaw Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 7th July 2021- Incumbent


The Indian Ministry of Railways is responsible for the country's rail transportation system. The Ministry of Railways is in charge of the state-owned Indian Railways, which is overseen by the Chairman of the Railway Board, which reports to the Prime Minister. In every year's session of Parliament, the railway minister develops and delivers the Rail Budget. Ashwini Vaishnaw has been appointed as the country's new Railways Minister, replacing Arun Jaitley. Prior to Ashwini Vaishnaw taking over as Railway Minister, Piyush Goyal of the BJP was in charge of the ministry after the reshuffle of the cabinet.

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