PR plans to start three new train services on different routes

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PR plans to start three new train services on different routes

ISLAMABAD: Ministry of Railways is planning to launch three new train services between Kohat-Rawalpindi, Karachi-Mirpurkhas and Sibbi-Khost during the current financial year.

“At present 104 passengers and 60 freight trains including 12 freight trains are operative on the system per day,” an official in the Ministry told APP.

To a question, he said the deficit was budgeted at Rs. 33.50 billion during 2013-14 which was brought down to Rs 32.35 billion through increased revenue and reduced expenditure through improved managerial control.

He said this trend continued during financial year 2014-15 and 2015-16 in which the deficit was further reduced to Rs 27.246 and Rs 26.993 billion respectively.

The final account for the financial year 2016-17 are under finalization, he said adding that the deficit is likely to be enhanced this year due to increase in salaries and pensions payment by the government, he added.

To another question, he said that it is a fact that Pakistan Railways has started a project for up-gradation of Main Line-1(Peshawar to Karachi) and establishment of new dry port near Havelian, under China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The official said that currently the preliminary design of the project is under review and it is expected that the work on ground would be started early next year.

He said the project entails up- gradation of railway system from Peshawar to Karachi including Taxila to Havelian section having speed of 160/120 kms/hr, modern signaling system, upgraded stations and rolling stock.

For implementation of the project a framework agreement has already been signed between the Government of Pakistan and Government of China in May, 2017, he added.