Different types of stations in Indian railways

If you have observed the station names written on an Indian railway ticket you will find that they end with the suffix like Junction, Central, Terminus etc. So what does this mean with regards to the station and how are they different from each other? Let us find out in this article.


Names of different railway stations in Indian railway routes end with nomenclature like Junction, Terminus, Central etc. But there are some stations which do not have any such additions in their name. Is it just the random naming convention or is there some significance attached to it? Let us try to understand the significance of mentioning these terms along with the railway station names.

Understanding the tags after the station name

  • Junction : In day to day life Junction means meeting point of two things or a network formed by the intersection of several entities. In the railway context also junction means the same. Railway stations from where two or more different routes are converging or emerging are called junctions. This means that in railway junctions you can see railway tracks coming from different directions either converging or railway tracks getting diverted in a different direction for different routes. Normally railway junctions are the stations where people get down to board the train for a different route. They are generally used by people to change the trains since it is a meeting point of different railway routes. Most of the popular and big stations of Indian railways are junctions.
  • Terminus : Terminus is a railway station where the tracks get terminated and trains cannot move in both the directions. Trains have to reverse their direction after stopping at the terminus stations. Examples of some important Terminus stations are Bandra Terminus, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus etc.
  • Central : Central is usually a very important and big railway station of the city in which there are multiple stations. It is normally a very busy station and a lot of trains may pass through it. But it is not necessary that all the places having multiple stations will have one station named as Central. There is no such rule. Examples of Central stations are Mumbai Central, Mangalore Central, Kanpur Central etc.
  • Halt : For some small stations you might have observed that halt is mentioned at its end. Halts are generally the stations which are very small but have many tracks for the trains to pass or stop. Normally halt stations are used to allow the crossing of the trains. Sometimes a slower train is stopped at the halt and a faster train is allowed to pass.
  • Normal stations : Stations in which there are just two railway lines in to and fro directions are called stations. No words are added after station names in such cases. So in such stations, you cannot change the trains for other routes. You can only travel in single route in such stations. These are also very common stations. Many stations in Indian railways do not have any suffix after them.


So we see that different words after station names in Indian railways do have some special significance. These words denote the kind of station in terms of its size, importance, railway track network and layout, different routes emerging etc. For a normal person all these details may not matter but understanding them just makes us understand Indian railway network better.


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