"I'd like to introduce you to my friend Shankar, all the way from India! Shankar is a diesel engine and although he's not the most glamorous engine, he's very hardworking! He works on the Indian Railway, which is usually quite busy. He takes a lot of pride in making sure he delivers his trucks on time! Shankar really cares about protecting the environment. He taught me all about looking after animals! One time we had a big adventure. We came up with a clever plan to stop some pesky poachers catching tigers from the jungles in India. Shankar is a really useful engine!" Thomas talks about Shankar in Meet the Characters!

Shankar is an Indian diesel shunter. He works on the Indian Railway.


Thomas & Friends

Shankar is first seen working in a shunting yard as Thomas and Nia are heading to Sodor. He later brings Thomas some trucks to pull during his visit, with the former thinking he was an elephant at first.

Thomas later meets Shankar after daydreaming about tigers, Shankar then talks about how he feels sorry for the tigers having their peace disturbed by the tourists, he later appears when Thomas spots a tiger, honking his horn to scare it off, he then explains to Thomas that the tigers are rare and endangered due to hunters. Rajiv then shows up with two men claiming to be there so they can spot a tiger, but Shankar notices that they have a cage with them for capturing one instead. He and Thomas devise a plan to stop the hunters, which involves Shankar pretending to be a tiger to lure the men into a trap. After the hunters are arrested, Shankar returns to his work, but not without spotting a tiger.

Sometime later, he was saved by Rajiv from Noor Jehan almost crashing in the sheds because of her brakes not working.

Shankar helped everyone fixed Thomas' mistake by taking the cars/trucks in the wrong station.


Shankar is wise and incredibly sympathetic, but also serious and blunt, always straight to the point. If there is a way to set things right, he can be counted on to carry it out. He also takes no nonsense from slackers or showoffs, often scolding Thomas for his occasional lack of focus, and Rajiv for his attitude. Despite this, he always enjoys a good laugh.

Technical Details


Shankar is based on a Russian TGM23 class diesel shunter. Ivan shares this basis.


Shankar is painted brown, cream and orange. His wheels and running plate are brown, and his handrails are yellow.


Thomas & Friends


Voice Actors


  • His model is a modified version of Ivan's.
  • His name means "beneficent" or "giver of bliss" in the Sanskrit language.
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