Saturday August 20, 2022

Coronavirus not to affect CPEC: Sheikh Rashid

By Our Correspondent
March 15, 2020

LAHORE: Coronavirus would never affect the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the Main Line (ML-1) project would continue according to the schedule, said Minister for Pakistan Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed at the Pakistan Railways Headquarters here on Saturday.

He offered eight railway hospitals and 36 dispensaries to the Health Department for setting up isolation wards for affected patients of coronavirus. Addressing a press conference at the PR headquarters, he said that the railways had taken precautionary measures against coronavirus and all divisions have been directed to ensure cleanliness at all railway stations.

The minister said the nation should not be afraid and panic should not be spread as the religion also does not allow to do so and precautionary measures should be adopted.

Commenting on the political leadership of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, the minister said these parties have lost their position in national politics. He said PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz is just demanding ouster from the country.

However, he said no train is being closed and all 134 trains will remain operational to facilitate passengers. He said few cases of coronavirus have been registered in the country and all these cases have history of recent traveling from other countries. He said three trains Lasani Express (running between Lahore and Sialkot via Narowal), Jinnah Express (running between Lahore and Karachi) and Fareed Express (running between Lahore and Karachi) are being outsourced, whereas, seven more passenger trains would be outsourced in phases. “Six freight trains will also be given to private firms,” he said, adding that those trains would be privatized, which are running in deficit.

To a question, he said the Pakistan Railways earned Rs400 to Rs500 million more than that of the previous year.