KARACHI, Aug 02 (APP):Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed on Friday said new washing-lines in Karachi and Lahore would be constructed within next 90 days and under ML-1 project new signals and new tracks would also be established.
Speaking in a press conference at his camp office here, he said as compared to previous year lesser train accidents occurred this year. Old tracks and signals were among the main causes of the accidents.
He said ML-1 was the only solution to all issues, adding currently 138 trains were running on the track on daily basis.
He said he had witnessed a large number of people sitting on the railway tracks having chitchats, playing cards and not afraid of death at Drigh Road. Graves, mazaars and Mosques had been built on the sides of railway track in Sukkur. This was one of the worst aspects of society which needed the most attention, he added.
Sheikh Rasheed said the number of passengers and freight trains had increased during the tenure of the incumbent government.
Talking about Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) project, the minister informed that 38km of the track was vacated. He appealed to the Sindh government to ensure vacation of the remaining 5km.
Sheikh Rasheed said Sindh Express a new train which was launched during the tenure of present government and run between Karachi and Sukkur would now run till Multan from August 10.
The railways minister said all the schools and educational institutions constructed over the railway tracks were closed.
He said his old videos were being circulated on social media and unfortunately some of the news channels were also broadcasting them. “All such controversies do not affect me, I will appeal to the media not to air old content regarding me which has nothing to do with the affairs of railways. All these videos are over 2-3 years old
during the time when i was in opposition.”
The minister on the occasion announced 20 percent hike in rates of freight services from August 10, however there would be no increase in fares of passenger trains. He said railways earned 10 billion more as compared to the previous year. Its deficit was reduced to around 5 billion.
He said railways would soon enter into an agreement on South Asia Pakistan Terminal Limited (SAPTL) with Karachi Port Trust (KPT). He said he had a detailed meeting about the agreement with the KPT chairman.