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December 2, 2018

Rashid lauds COAS contribution to Kartarpur Corridor


December 2, 2018

LAHORE : Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has said that all credit for Kartarpur Corridor goes to Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s one hug (with Navjot Singh Sidhu).

Talking to reporters after addressing a press conference at Railways Headquarters here on Saturday, the minister said the hug sent that message (of peace) to the world which Imran Khan materialised (through Kartarpur Corridor).

The minister said India was now mourning that its mission (of hatred) was totally destroyed by just one hug of Mr Bajwa.

Regretting that Pakistan Railways could not make proper arrangements for Sikh pilgrims for their travel to Punja Sahib, Sheikh Rashid said that in order to ensure better arrangements for the upcoming occasion of Baisakhi, administrative control of Hasan Abdal station had been handed over to Rawalpindi Division from Peshawar Division.

He announced that after a successful pilot project, Pakistan Railways reservation offices at all the seven divisions of railways would function round the clock.

Besides facilitating the public, the pilot project helped Pakistan Railways increase its income by 20 per cent, he added.

Sheikh Rashid said the railways’ profit in the first 100 days of the government was Rs 2 billion.“Pakistan Railways had an income of Rs 2o billion in the four months while our target is an annual profit of Rs 10 billion,” he added.

He warned that any railways or railways police employee found involved in facilitating fare dodgers would be removed from service.

He said Pakistan Railways had deposited around Rs 50 million in the PM-CJ Fund for Diamer Basha and Mohmand Dam.

He added the amount was collected by getting Re 1 on a ticket from the passengers.

He also said two new freight trains would be started from Dec 25, adding he was trying to increase the number of freight trains from 8 to 15.

The minister said railways would promote train-tourism and, for the purpose, the services of three steam locomotives were being started from Rawalpindi to Taxila, Peshawar to Attock Khurd and Karachi to Keenjhar Lake.

With the start of Rehman Baba Express on Dec. 23, he said, he would fulfil his promise of starting 10 trains in the first 100 days of the government.

He said Pakistan Railways had achieved 90 per cent punctuality of passenger trains.

Sheikh Rashid said railways had decided to upgrade Chaklala Railway Station and added all the railway stations where there were no passengers would be shut down.

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