Zhob Valley Railway

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Zhob Valley Railway
ژوب وادی ریلوے
OwnerPakistan Railways
Operator(s)Pakistan Railways
Opened1929 (1929)
Closed1986 (1986)
Line length298 km (185 mi)
Track gauge762 mm (2 ft 6 in)

The Zhob Valley Railway (Urdu: ژوب وادی ریلوے) was one of several branch lines in Pakistan, operated and maintained by Pakistan Railways. The line began at Bostan Junction and ended at Zhob.[1] The total length of this railway line is 298 kilometers (185 mi) with 14 railway stations. Upon competition, the 762 mm (2 ft 6 in) railway became the longest narrow gauge system in the region.[2]


The Zhob Valley Railway was built in two sections between 1916 and 1920. The first section was built from Boston Junction to Muslimbagh during World War I by the Balochistan Chrome Ore Company and opened in 1916. Muslimbagh had and abundance of Chromite and was transported by the railway to munitions production factories in the British Empire.[3] The second section was built by the North Western State Railway as an extension from Muslimbagh to Fort Sandeman (now Zhob). Work began in 1920 and reached Qila Saifullah in 1927 and Zhob in 1930. The intent to extend the railway from Zhob to Bannu, but never materialized.[4] At 2224 meters above the sea, Kan Mehtarzai railway station would become one of the highest narrow gauge railway stations in the world. During winter months, the line could be buried by snow.


The line was closed down in 1991 after successive operational losses and was later dismantled completely.


The line is proposed to be rebuilt as a 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge line under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor as part of a new railway link between Kotla Jam and Quetta.[5]




  1. ^ "Off-track railways". Dawn. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  2. ^ "Breakfast at Kan Mehtarzai" by Salman Rashid 28 April 2011; Retrieved 14 Dec 2015
  3. ^ “British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue” - Search; Retrieved 71 Apr 2016
  4. ^ "All Things Pakistan" /Zhob Valley Railway (ZVR) of Pakistan by Owais Mughal, June 5, 2008; Retrieved 14 Dec 2015
  5. ^ "Zhob-Bostan rail track to be restored under CPEC". Daily Times.


  • Wallace, Richard (2021). "Chapter 1: The Zhob Valley Railway". Hill Railways of the Indian Subcontinent. Ramsbury, Marlborough, UK: The Crowood Press. pp. 15–34. ISBN 9781785008085.

External links[edit]

  • Zhob Valley Railway Survey c early 1890s, page 98 Some Rambles of a Sapper by Brigr-Genl. Herbert Henry Austin. 1928 Hathi Trust Digital Library
  • L/PS/11/168, P 994/1920; “P 994/1920 Baluchistan: communications in the Zhob valley; proposal for a broad-gauge railway from Hindubagh to Fort Sandeman”; 1 Sep 1919-23 Mar 1920