PTI govt decides to investigate mass-transit projects

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf federal government has decided to conduct a forensic audit of mass transit projects in the country.

“The cabinet has decided that the mass transit system in Punjab and one in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will undergo a forensic audit,” Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry told reporters during a news conference.

According to Chaudhry, the cabinet had approved the forensic audit of projects in Multan, Islamabad, Lahore and the Orange Line. These projects had been started under the government of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

“Billions were spent on these projects. Despite spending so much money, they still require funds to operate. If need be the [Federal Investigation Agency] FIA will be tasked to investigate this,” Information Minister Chaudhry said after the meeting.

Prior to being elected as the country’s prime minister, PTI Chairperson Imran Khan often criticised the metro bus projects initiated by the PML-N government.

While addressing a public rally in Bahawalpur in July, Imran said Rs60 billion were wasted on under-utilised Multan metro bus service. He believed the project was started by the Sharif family to make money.
Prior to that, he took to social media, stating that a probe in the metro bus and Orange Line Train Metro Train projects will reveal that earning massive kickbacks was the reason for “building these loss-making mega projects”.
In a message on Twitter, Imran had shared a report of private news channel wherein it was reported that an audit report of the Islamabad-Rawalpindi Metro Bus project revealed a loss of Rs5 billion to the national exchequer.