The Railway Men

Indian web series

  • Historical drama
  • Disaster
Created byShiv RawailWritten byAayush GuptaDirected byShiv RawailStarring
  • R. Madhavan
  • Kay Kay Menon
  • Divyenndu
  • Babil Khan
Music bySam SlaterOriginal languageHindiNo. of episodes4ProductionExecutive producers
  • Aditya Chopra
  • Uday Chopra
  • Yogendra Mogre
  • Akshaye Widhani
CinematographyRubaisEditorYasha Jaidev RamchandaniRunning time51–65 minutesProduction companyOriginal releaseNetworkNetflixRelease18 November 2023 (2023-11-18)

The Railway Men: The Untold Story of Bhopal 1984 is a 2023 Indian Hindi-language historical drama television miniseries about railway workers who saved many lives during the 1984 toxic gas leak at the chemical company Union Carbide India Limited's plant in Bhopal. It is produced by YRF Entertainment (the streaming division of Yash Raj Films) and stars R. Madhavan, Kay Kay Menon, Divyenndu and Babil Khan.[1][2] Sunny Hinduja and Juhi Chawla Mehta play supporting roles.

Filmed from December 2021 to May 2022, all four episodes of the miniseries were released on Netflix on 18 November 2023.


The Railway Men is based on railway workers who saved many lives during the 1984 gas tragedy at the chemical company Union Carbide India Limited's plant in Bhopal.[3] The series is inspired by the efforts of station master Ghulam Dastagir and his team at the Bhopal Junction railway station on the night of the tragedy.[4]




  • Sunny Hinduja as Jagmohan Kumawat, a journalist
  • Juhi Chawla Mehta as Rajeshwari Janglay, a principled Railways Ministry bureaucrat, DG Personnel of Railways
  • Dibyendu Bhattacharya as Kamruddin, a manager at Union Carbide
  • Philip Rosch as Madsen, the American head of the plant
  • Denzil Smith as railway minister
  • Raghubir Yadav as a train guard
  • Mandira Bedi as Rajbir Kaur, a Sikh woman
  • Connor Keene as Alex Braun, a German scientist
  • Sunita Rajwar as Vijaya, a cleaning woman
  • Manish Wadhwa as Mirza
  • Shrikant Verma as Ishwar Prasad
  • Nivedita Bhargava as Imad's mother
  • Annapurna Soni as Shazia, Ansari's widow
  • Bhumika Dube as Nafisa, Kamruddin’s wife
  • Thanu Khan as Markhand
  • Aditya Shukla as Ratlu
  • Priya Yadav as Sohini, Vijaya’s daughter
  • Rahul Tewari as Benedict
  • Mushtaq Khan as Railway Yard Man


No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal release date
1"Episode 1"Shiv RawailAayush Gupta18 November 2023 (2023-11-18)
Employees at the Union Carbide India Limited work under negligible safety protocols. Imad Riaz, a former employee, talks to a journalist, Kumawat, about the death of his friend at the plant due to toxic gas inhalation. He says that the management took no action and fired him instead for complaining. A manager at the plant, Kamruddin, also tries to give information to Kumawat about the lack of safety at the crumbling plant. Meanwhile, Iftekaar Siddiqui is an idealistic station master of the Bhopal Junction railway station. A dacoit named Balwant Yadav intent on looting the station safe-house introduces himself to Iftekaar as a cop in pursuit of the dacoit. On the night of 2 December 1984, due to malfunctioning instruments and untrained workers at the plant, a highly toxic gas Methyl isocyanate (MIC) leaks into the atmosphere, instantly killing many workers, including Kamruddin.
2"Episode 2"Shiv RawailAayush Gupta18 November 2023 (2023-11-18)
As the gas starts spreading into the highly populated Bhopal city, hordes of people begin to collapse in the streets, many of whom die. At Bhopal Junction station, Iftekaar and Balwant are initially confused by the chaos. They soon realise that people who were indoors were seemingly unharmed. They try to gather the crowds into the station waiting room. Due to incomplete cable repair work, communication systems are down, and Iftekaar has no way to reach nearby stations and warn them. Imad, who had begun a new job as a loco pilot, becomes aware of the gas leak due to his past history. He goes to the station to warn Iftekaar. Meanwhile, at a nearby station, Rati Pandey, a general manager for the Indian Railways, becomes aware of the situation.
3"Episode 3"Shiv RawailAayush Gupta18 November 2023 (2023-11-18)
Rati tries to persuade DG (Personnel) Rajeshwari Janglay to take action and send help to the people stranded in Bhopal. However, her pleas are neglected by her superiors. Rajeshwari entrusts Rati to disobey the orders and help them anyway. Rati inspires several railway workers to help him in the cause, and they set off towards Bhopal. At Bhopal Junction, Iftekaar, Imad, and Balwant find their own way to rescue people trapped at the station by putting them in a goods train. Meanwhile, Madsen, the American head of the plant, refuses to provide any help. A German scientist, who seemingly has an anti-dote to MIC is thwarted in his effort by both the Indian Government and Union Carbide.
4"Episode 4"Shiv RawailAayush Gupta18 November 2023 (2023-11-18)
Unable to warn them, a train with 1000 passengers makes its way towards Bhopal Junction. The train is delayed due to anti-Sikh rioters. Meanwhile, Rati and his workers make their way towards the junction as well. Iftekaar and Imad find a way to avoid a collision, but Imad dies due to inhalation. After helping the people board the rescue train, Iftekaar too seemingly dies. Balwant retrieves his key to steal money from the vault. Rati helps the survivors with medical supplies, and it is revealed that Rajeshwari and he are married. Meanwhile, Kumawat, appalled at the disaster, begins documenting the event through photographs. On the next day, rescue trains carry many survivors away from the city. At a makeshift graveyard, thousands of bodies are seen to be buried and burnt. Iftekaar, like a few others who were pronounced dead, wakes up. Balwant has a change of heart, and returns the money. Many years later, Kumawat revisits Bhopal, and sees that long-term effects of the disaster are still being felt.


The Railway Men marked the directorial debut of Shiv Rawail, who was an assistant director at Yash Raj Films.[1] It also marked the first streaming fiction series of the company, under their subdivision YRF Entertainment.[1]

The series began filming on 1 December 2021 and wrapped on 11 May 2022.[6][7]


Two former employees of Union Carbide India Limited, convicted in the gas leak case, filed a plea to prevent the release of the series; the Bombay High Court rejected their case.[8]

The series was released on Netflix on 18 November 2023.[9]


Nandini Ramnath of found The Railway Men to be a "compelling saga of ordinary heroism"; she particularly praised the production design by Rajat Poddar for his "remarkably faithful recreations" of the era.[10] Sonil Dedhia of News18 considered it a "passionate, emotionally resonant, and incredibly moving" tale of under-appreciated heroes, but felt that too many subplots and backstories prevented it from being a "taut thriller".[11] Mayur Sanap of commended Rawail for handling the tragic event with "seriousness and respect without going overboard with the dramatic impact".[12]

The Indian Express's Shubhra Gupta termed it "a worthy effort, which brings back an expansive, old-fashioned style of storytelling to a still-relevant event", and particularly praised the performances of Kay Kay Menon and Babil Khan.[13] India Today's Zinia Bandyopadhyay considered Khan to be the "real star of the show".[14] Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV opined, "The Railway Men is buoyed by a clutch of laudable performances and storytelling that does not slide below a certain level of competence. But it could have been much, much more."[15] Hindustan Times's Santanu Das believed that the series' handling of the tragedy was not at par with the handling of the Chernobyl disaster by the HBO miniseries Chernobyl (2019).[16]


  1. ^ a b c "Netflix's 'The Railway Men' Was Handpicked by Producer Aditya Chopra to be YRF's First Series, Director Reveals (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety.
  2. ^ "The Railway Men: YRF's First OTT Series, Starring R Madhavan, Is Based on Bhopal Gas Tragedy". News18. 2 December 2021. Retrieved 23 April 2022.
  3. ^ Singh, Suhani (18 November 2023). "Netflix's 'The Railway Men': A few good men". India Today. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  4. ^ "Bhopal gas tragedy: An unsung hero who saved many lives". The Times of India. 4 December 2019. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 27 November 2023.
  5. ^ a b c Menon, Dishya (15 November 2023). "The Railway Men: From R Madhavan to Babil Khan, Meet The Cast and The Characters They Play". News18. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  6. ^ Shackleton, Liz (2 December 2021). "India's Yash Raj Films enters streaming production with 'The Railway Men'". Screen Daily. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  7. ^ "Babil Khan wraps shooting for web series 'The Railway Men'". The Economic Times. 11 May 2022. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  8. ^ "HC rejects stay on OTT release of web series based on Bhopal gas tragedy". Hindustan Times. 18 November 2023. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  9. ^ Whittock, Jesse (26 October 2023). "Netflix & Yash Raj Films On Track To Launch 'The Railway Men' In November". Deadline. Retrieved 26 October 2023.
  10. ^ Ramnath, Nandini (18 November 2023). "'The Railway Men' review: A compelling saga of ordinary heroism". Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  11. ^ Dedhia, Sonil (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men Review: Kay Kay Menon, R Madhavan's Show Is Hard-Hitting But Brings Too Many Sub-Plots". News18. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  12. ^ Sanap, Mayur (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men Review: Compelling Watch". Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  13. ^ Gupta, Shubhra (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men review: Kay Kay Menon, Babil Khan give terrific performances in a worthy show". The Indian Express. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  14. ^ Bandyopadhyay, Zinia (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men Review: Great performances, good script elevate this gripping drama". India Today. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  15. ^ Chatterjee, Saibal (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men Review: Buoyed By Laudable Performances But Could Have Been Much More". NDTV. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  16. ^ Das, Santanu (18 November 2023). "The Railway Men review: Real life tragedy of the Bhopal gas leak feels too manufactured". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 18 November 2023.

External links

  • The Railway Men at IMDb Edit this at Wikidata
  • The Railway Men on Netflix
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