Rail transport in Pakistan began in 1855 during the British Raj, when several railway companies began to lay track and started to operate in present-day Pakistan. The system was originally a patchwork of local rail lines operated by small private companies, including the Scinde, Punjab and Delhi Railways and the Indus Steam Flotilla. In 1870, the four companies were amalgamated as the Scinde, Punjab & Delhi Railway. Several other rail lines were built shortly thereafter, including the Sind–Sagar and Trans–Baluchistan Railways and the Sind–Pishin, Indus Valley, Punjab Northern and Kandahar State Railways. These six companies and the Scinde, Punjab & Delhi Railway merged to form the North Western State Railway in 1880. In 1947, following Pakistan's independence, the North Western Railway became Pakistan Western Railway and the rail system was reorganized.