Thursday, April 29, 2010

Jolarpettai Railway Junction - History Reviewed....

Jolarpettai Railway Junction (JTJ) - a landmark for all the people in and around Jolarpettai when they go out of the district. This junction has to be mentioned if we start to talk about the history of Southern Railways and the history of Vellore District (then North Arcot Ambedkar District).

It is situated in the foothills of Yelagiri Hills. 7 Km from Tirupattur Town, 60 Km from Vellore City, 212 km from Chennai Central. Jolarpettai Junction is situated in the selection grade panchayat Union, to rightly say this panchayat is in jolarpettai junction.

The history of Jolarpettai Junction goes back to 1860's. When Madras Railways is started the rail started running from Royapuram to Wallajah Road, which latter extended to Arakkonam. In the mean time rail line work was started in 1864 in the Jolarpettai - Bangalore Contonement route in which Bangalore mail started its journey in 1868.

I have heard old railway people in jolarpettai saying(i spent my early childhood days in Jolarpettai) this town is named after a british person " JOLAR" who was assigned the job of creating a place for Railway basement for their employees. Its obvious that the entire town is only with railway quarters. (Now many private residentials came out).

The Brindavan Express when introduced in the late 1960's was considered one of the fastest train at that time which crosses the Jolarpettai - Bangalore contonment section in 1hour 3o min.(now it takes around 3hours i think). This shows how people worked in this part of railways those days.

Jolarpettai Junction is one of the biggest junction in the Indian Railways and is the only station in Asia having sixteen tracks. This Junction handles about 60 passenger trains daily of which few trains originate from this Junction notable one is the popularly called JP express(Yelagiri Exp) which is now for name sake originating from Tirupattur. This Junction doesn't satisfies the norms for the status of junction which actually has to connect all the four direction but connecting only three direction Salem, Bangalore and Chennai. This will be soon compensated by the proposed Tiruvannamalai Route.

After upgrading the next station Tirupattur as Junction, the traffic in JTJ has reduced to a certain extent. But after that many trains made up their correct time due to the releif congestion occurred in this point. This Junction station is unique in one sense, this will be lazy during day times and will be in full swing in the night. I have seen one day that all the five platforms are with express trains, two heading bangalore, two towards Chennai and one towards Salem. It surprising with in five minutes all the trains were cleared. Thats the track arrangemnt. This wont happen in any of the junctions in Southern Railway.

Jolarpettai Junction is one of the Class A Junction in the Southern Railways which comes under Salem Division. This Junction has all the facilities of workshop, shelter for the goods trains. This Junction is unique in one thing of having the ticket counter in the first floor on the bridge. This Junction has two bridges one with steps and another with the ramp which connects two villages of the town, Kodiyur and Eadayampatti.

Interesting Facts about JTJ:
1. This junction gets its water source from River Paalar, the pump house for which is situated about 20 km from the Junction near Ramanaiyakenpettai.
2. The adjacent station Kethandapatti serves for the storage of the water received from the river.
3. The curd rice and Medhu Vada sold in the Junction is once considered best in the Chennai - Coimbatore section. (even now I think...?)
4. A typical announcement can be heard often " The Blue Mountain Express will stop and go in the Platform few minutes" instead of "The Blue Mountain Express will arrive at Platform No few minutes"
5. During early 1990's this junction served the entire town with water when it went dry.

It is proposed to elevate the standards of the Junction in the near future and the works are on progress.

I hope when you people get down in this station defenitely you feel that you are on an historical place