Series 1 - Episode 3: India

Episode 3: India

Sorry, this episode is no longer available to watch on Demand 5.

Find out why

In the last instalment of his interesting travelogue of extreme railway journeys across the world’s toughest terrains, presenter Chris Tarrant takes a trip through India on the Konkan line.

The Konkan railway runs down the west coast of India, connecting the port cities of Mumbai and Mangalore. While the British built 40,000 miles of track across the vast sub-continent, they stayed clear of this narrow, boggy strip of land as it was deemed too treacherous and difficult to build on. As a result, western India remained undeveloped, until a brave Indian engineer took on the daunting task. Known as ‘The People’s Railway’, the line opened in January 1998, finally connecting the remote villages along the route to the outside world.

Chris starts his journey at dawn in Mumbai, India’s financial capital and home to Bollywood. The ‘Mandovi Express’ is the first of many trains he catches along the 472miles of track running through the states of Maharashtra, Goa and Karnataka. As he travels through the stunningly lush scenery, Chris is struck by the engineering challenges that this extreme environment must have presented.

To keep the line straight, 92 tunnels and 2,000 bridges had to be built in one of the wettest areas of the country. The monsoon rain continues to create havoc. In the last 10 years there have been two fatal accidents due to landslides derailing the trains. Chris joins the monsoon team who patrol the line daily to ensure that it is free from obstructions. He is amazed at the work and commitment going on behind the scenes to prevent further incidents. However, on ‘The People’s Railway’ it is his fellow passengers that provide the real enjoyment on the journey. Chris throws himself into his trip, inspired not only by the engineering miracle of the railway but by the community it serves.

All episodes 

Comments (24)

  • David Charlesworth

    10 months ago

    David Charlesworth

    Looks good, but it won't play. Giving up.

  • James Varney

    10 months ago

    James Varney

    So few railway programms good or bad are made nowadays. And yet the funney thing is there are millions of people who love railways and watching and lerning about them, and other places were they run to, Also their people's and how there railways around the world work, It's a great way of getting an insight into other countrys and their peoples who use them all over the world, We need lots more films to be made and shown on t.v.for our enjoyment and education. This little set of programms was great fun to watch. More please. Need any help on the crew. I'm your man.

  • ian mccorquodale

    1 year ago

    ian mccorquodale

    cannot view any of the previous programs when you press the play button it just doesn't play?

  • Richard Talbot

    over 1 year ago

    Richard Talbot

    Great program, it always looks like the it just the presenter yet i bet there are loads more. When palin did these things he always showed how many roughed it with him. Would have been nice to see. On some of our trains it would be nice to open the doors in the summer and let some air in (FGW two car units).

  • geoff

    over 1 year ago


    Chris says the train left at 6.55 bang on time yet as he walked to the train the clock clearly stated 6.58.

  • Chandra

    over 1 year ago


    The statement by that young engineer read out by Chris towards the end of the programme on the Konkan railway should be engraved in the hearts of every other engineer and over the portals of every engineering college. thanks for a fantastic series.

  • mick

    over 1 year ago



  • Ian

    over 1 year ago


    Yeah, I'm getting the same message. What's it all about? Why block certain areas?

  • statics84

    over 1 year ago


    has anybody else had a message saying unable to play protected content? whats this mean and whyy c5 is it doing this now when never done it before, never had a problem ever before......!!!

  • rohit

    over 1 year ago


    amazing watch. some cringe comments about sachin but overall put together nicely.

  • ws1

    over 1 year ago


    Really good series so far, Channel 5 more like this PLEASE!!!!!!

  • Ringo

    over 1 year ago


    Its rare to watch a programe thats so riveting, Chris has done an excellent job at presenting it, yes there are a few gafs, but, the overall effect is a credit to Channel 5. Trains are seen as for trainspotters, this goes a long way to show that they are for everone, communities etc. I am a professional railway man, and get very complacent with what we have, it does good to see that other countries use there railway to such good use. Dissagree with Steve above, Chris...great presenter, Portillo would have nott fitted into the scene anywhere near as well.

  • Ron Perry

    over 1 year ago

    Ron Perry

    So when are Frirst Great Western going to start running to a Monsoon Timetable? A great culmination to a hugely enjoyable trio of travelogues, although quite what the local population made of CT bragging ad nauseam that he once met Sachin Tendulkar.... they probably thought he was the 'nutter on the train'. After the fourth occasion I was hoping the great batsman himself would appear behind Mr Tarrant with a well-aimed straight drive (but not as much as wishing Mr Bradshaw had at some convenient moment inserted his 1913 guide into a solar-challeged recess of Michael Portillo). I was disappointed that this was only a mini-series - how about trans-Mexico, Beijing - Tibet, anywhere to Victoria Falls for the next series? Oh, and Channel 5, if you are in desparate need of a roving researcher for tit, please email me!

  • dodgydemon

    over 1 year ago


    makes me want to make that trip soon... chris was brilliant!

  • P Wilson

    over 1 year ago

    P Wilson

    Well this is one of the few Railway documentaries that I found engaging and interesting. Thanks to Chris Tarrant. Hope there's more next year

  • hazza

    over 1 year ago


    channel five your demand is terrible it dont stop stoping pausing buffering and i all ways have to wa

  • This comment was removed by a moderator

  • Owen Berkeley-Hill

    over 1 year ago

    Owen Berkeley-Hill

    If the train on the Konkan travelled at 100 mph, Chris, you'd have done your journey in four hours!

  • This comment was removed by a moderator

  • Naresh

    over 1 year ago


    IT cool you see one part of India there are lot more part. Don't drink water that given in train. Just buy a water from the store. It's my advice.

  • This comment was removed by a moderator

  • steve

    over 1 year ago


    Extreme railway journeys! Perhaps someone should have mentioned this to Tarrant. It was never going to be like Pangbourne to Paddington. Me me I I attitude, huffing and puffing put me off completely. I suppose, to his credit he din`t swear and abuse the cooks on the train like Gordon Ramsey, however some cultural respect please. Michael Portillo would have been superb presenting this series - he doesnt seem to have much of an axe to grind. Great concept lousy presenter.

  • This comment was removed by a moderator

  • mike

    over 1 year ago


    i think this series is so cool and chris fits in so well and makes it