LAHORE, Dec 10 (APP): Punjab Transport Minister Jahanzeb Khan Khitchi on Tuesday said that Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) was the first transport project to be completed under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) initiative.
The train project symbolises Pak-China friendship, he said and added that it was a magnificent gift for Lahorites from the friendly country. It is not a project of any political party, but a project of the state for its people, he added.
Jahanzeb Khitchi expressed these views while addressing the infrastructure completion ceremony of the OLMT project. He unveiled the inaugural plaque at Ali Town to formally open trial run of the metro train.
The minister said that the project was a joint venture of the Punjab government and China, which was being completed for providing facilities to people of Lahore, adding that the OLMT was completely environment-friendly transport system.
He said that the project was the first electric vehicle for Pakistan public sector. The train also holds the distinction of the first computer controlled train, he added.
Khitchi said that the project would not only ease the volume of traffic on Multan Road but also reduce environmental pollution in the area.
Orange Line Train project would be opened for the public as soon as possible, he said and added that construction work of roads around the Orange Line track would also be completed at the earliest.
He said that Chinese engineers, transport department, mass transit authority and officials of the LDA working on the project deserve appreciation for completion of its infrastructure.
Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Punjab Information & Culture Minister Fayyaz-ul-Hassan Chohan said that approximately 2,500,000 passengers would travel by the metro train daily.
He said that an annual saving of Rs 15 billion was also expected under the head of passengers’ time of travel and vehicular operations.
He said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government, in order to lessen problems of masses, felt its responsibility of completing the project on time.
He said that with day-and-night efforts, the Orange Line train has run its full route on electricity and its trial run had been successfully completed.
The minister said that it has happened for the first time in the country’s history that the government of the day, instead of halting a project of the previous government, completed it on time and set an example of political tolerance.
Physical infrastructure of the project has been completed and now testing process of break, alignment, signal and other technical tests would be conducted after which train would become fully operational for the public.
Punjab Energy Minister Dr Akhtar Malik, Food Minister Samiullah Chaudhry, Advisor to CM Dr Salman Shah, Members of Assembly, Secretary Transport Asad-ur-Rehman Gillani, Managing Director Orange Line Metro Train Project Sibtain Fazal Haleem, Executive Deputy General Manager of Chinese NORINCO Company Wang Yunlin and other officials were also present.