Indian Railways

List of Indian Railways Abbreviations That You Need to Know

We all come across different shortcuts and abbreviations used in Indian railways while we are traveling by train. You can understand some of them by context but some abbreviations are too technical to understand. While booking a train ticket, you see different railway ticket booking abbreviations. You might be wondering why knowing IRCTC abbreviations is important. Remember that to ensure a safe and secure journey, you should be aware of all the terminologies and core abbreviations in railways. So here is a list of commonly used abbreviations used in Indian railways. 

Technical acronyms and core abbreviation in Indian Railways


ABS  Automatic Block Signalling

ACD  Anti-Collision Device

AE  Automatic Emergency or Auto-Emergency (a type of brake system)

AFTC  Audio Frequency Track Circuiting

AIMS  Accounting Information Management System (AIMS portal)

ATC  Automated Train Control

ATP  Automatic Train Protection

AVB  Automatic Vacuum Brake


BPC  Brake Power Certificate (issued before train departure)

BS  Braking in Series configuration

BSL  Block Section Limit


CDO  Coaching Depot

CLS  Colour-light signalling

COCR  Confirmatory Oscillograph Car Run

COFC  Container on a flat car

CTC  Centralised Traffic Control

CTR  Complete Track Renewal

CWR  Continuous Welded Rail (0.5km and longer sections of welded rail)


DAC  Digital Axle Counter

DLBI  Double Line Block Instrument

DEMU  Diesel-Electric Multiple Unit

DETC  Diesel-Electric Tower Car

DHMU  Diesel Hydraulic Multiple Unit (hydraulic transmission DMU)

DMU  Diesel Multiple Unit

DP  Duty Pass

DPC  Driving Power Car

DS  Disconnecting Switch (to switch off OHE power to loco circuits)

DSC  Dual-Stacked Container service (or Double-Stacked Container)


ECR  Empty Coaching Rake

EFC  Eastern Freight Corridor

ELCM  Electronic Load Control Module (governor for DEMUs)

EMU  Electric Multiple Unit

EOG  End-On Generator Car

ESM  Electronic Signal Maintainer

ETA  Estimated Time of Arrival

ETCS  European Train Control System

EY  Empty (notation for empty rake in real-time train information systems)


FC  Financial Commissioner/ Freight Corridor

FEDL  Fully Electrified Double Line

FM  Fouling Mark

FP  Fouling Point; also Feed Pipe (at couplings of vehicles)

FOB  Foot overbridge (a pedestrian overpass)

FOIS  Freight operation information system

FRED  Flashing rear end device (a warning lamp at the rear of a train)

FT  Foreign tourist (annotation on reservation charts)


GTO  Gate Turn-Off thyristor


HEP  Head-end Power (power from the loco for the coaches)

HFTC  High-Frequency Track Circuit

HOBC  High-Output Ballast Cleaner

HOG  Head-On Generator

HHPDMU  High-Horsepower Diesel Electric Multiple Unit

HPDMU  High-powered Diesel Multiple Unit

HSCB  High-speed Circuit Breaker

HT  High Tension

HTCBC High Tensile-strength Centre-Buffer Coupler

HTS  High Tensile-strength Steel


IGBT  Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor


JRI  Junction Route Indicator

JOH Junction of head – the point where the tongue rail approaches the main rail.


LTPDS Live Train Position Display System

LVC Last Vehicle Check (automated detection of rake integrity)

LWR Long Welded Rail (5-15 rails welded together in a section)


MACLS Multiple-Aspect Colour-Light signalling

MCB Master Circuit Breaker (in locos)

MCO Military control office

MEMU Mainline Electric Multiple Unit

M/L Mainline

MLRI Multi-Lamp Route Indicator

MNI Modified Non-Interlocked (in working timetables)

MOG Mid-On Generator Car

MOT Motoring (position of the master controller in loco)


NBT Neale’s Ball Token

NI Non-Interlocked (in working timetables)

NTES National Train Enquiry System

NX eNtrance-eXit (interlocking panels)

NV Non-vegetarian (meal or restaurant)


OCV Other Coaching Vehicle – non-passenger coaches, e.g., pantry cars.

OFC Optical Fibre Cable

OHE Overhead Equipment (or foreman for same)

OMS Oscillation Monitoring System

OS Outstation


PCS Pneumatic Control System (loco shut-off/idling control which takes effect on the application of emergency brakes)

PCV Passenger Carrying Vehicle

PF Platform (sometimes P/F)

PI Panel Interlocking

POET Passenger Operated Enquiry Terminal

PRS Passenger Reservation System

PWI Permanent way inspector


RCC Remote Control Centre/ Railway convention committee

RE Railways Employee Staff on Duty for the train

REV Reverse motion (position of the master controller in loco), Reverser

RMS Railway mail service

ROB Road over-bridge (i.e., road goes over train tracks)

ROSHAN Rolling Stock Health Analyst (accelerometers and other equipment that monitor coach movement and report deviations from normal behaviour).

RPC Resistance Power Control (or Compartment) (in EMU power cars)

RPF Railway pension fund/ Railway police force

RR Railway receipt, refreshment room

RRF Railway reserve fund

RS Roadside

RTR Ready-to-run (modelling kits)

RTSA Rail travellers’ service agents


SCADA Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (monitoring and control system for remote control of electric traction systems)

SCRA Special class railway apprentice

SE Superelevation (of the curved track)

S/L Shunting Limit

SLBI Single Line Block Instrument

SM Station master

SOD Schedule of Dimensions

SPAD Signal Passed At Danger

SPTM Self-Printing Ticket Machine

SSDA Solid State Digital Axle Counter

SSI Solid State Interlocking

STR Schedule of Technical Requirements

STRI Stencil type Route Indicator

SW Single wire (of semaphore signals)

SWR Short Welded Rail (2-4 rails welded together in a section)


TAB Train Air Brake

TALQ Two-Aspect Lower Quadrant

TAWD Train Actuated Warning Device

TBTR Through Bridge Timber Renewal

TDR Ticket Deposit Receipt (when surrendering ticket for cancellation/refund)

TFR Through Fitting Renewal

TLC Traction Locomotive Controller

TM Traction Motor

TMS Train Management System (train monitoring used in Bombay suburban sections)

TOFC Trailer on a flat car

T/out Turnout

TPC Traction Power Controller

TRC Track Recording Car

TRO Traction Rolling-stock Operations

TRR Through Rail Renewal

TRT Traffic Recovery Time (a kind of make-up time allotment in working timetable)

TSS Traction Substation

TSR Through Sleeper Renewal

TTR Through Turnout Renewal

TWR Through Weld Renewal


UPF Unity Power Factor

USFD Ultrasonic Flaw Detection


V Vegetarian (meal or restaurant)

VCC Vacuum Continuity Certificate (issued before train departure)

VCB Vacuum Circuit Breaker

VG Vehicle guidance (the record of identifying numbers for coaches/wagons that make up a train)

VLRR Vegetarian light refreshment room

VRP Voltage Regulating Panel


WF Weak Field

WILD Wheel Impact Load Detector

WM Works manager

WSR Wheel Slip Relay

Railway ticket booking abbreviations:

ACC Air-conditioned coach or class

ACCC Air-conditioned chair car

CC Chair car

CNF Confirmed

ECC Executive chair car

FC First Class

GNWL General waiting list

LB Lower Berth

MB Middle Berth

PQWL Pooled quota waiting list

RAC Reservation against cancellation

RLWL Running line waiting list

Sh. CC Shatabdi chair car

SL Sleeper class

SLB Side Lower Berth

SUB Side Upper Berth

UB Upper Berth

WL Waiting list (or waitlisted)

W/T Without ticket

1A First class Air-conditioned

2A Air-conditioned 2-tier sleeper

2S Second-class Sitting

3A Air-conditioned 3-tier sleeper

PNR abbreviation in railways:

CK Tatkal Quota

DF Defence Quota

EQ Emergency Quota

FT Foreign Tourist

GN General Quota

HO High Official / Headquarters

HP Handicapped quota

LD Ladies Quota

LQ Ladies Quota

PH Parliament House (parliamentary quota)

RJQ Return journey quota

SS Lower Berth Quota/ SS quota

R Fee/Res Fee Reservation fee (annotation on the ticket)

V Ch, Vou Ch Voucher charges (annotation on the ticket)

Abbreviation of railway stations and trains

CANTT Cantonment stations

Exp/Sf Express/Superfast train

Jn Junction

M/E Mail/Express

Mxd. Mixed train

Pass or Pgr Passenger train

Raj Rajdhani Express

Rd Road (in station names)

RS Road-side

You can also know about the abbreviation for railway exam which will be very helpful if you are a railway exam aspirant. These IRCTC abbreviations are going to help you a lot in your exams. Now that you are aware of different abbreviations of IRCTC, don’t be confused next time you see any of these acronyms. 


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Author: Rohit Choubey

Rohit is an avid blogger as well an eminent digital marketeer. He has immense passion towards food blogging. His hobbies include travelling, cooking and watching movies. He is the content analyst for RailMitra.