‘Railway bearing weekly Rs 1 billion losses’

By Adnan Rafique

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed Wednesday said that Pakistan Railways was bearing loss of Rs 1 billion weekly due to coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Addressing a press conference here, the minister said that around 165,000 passengers travelled in trains towards different parts of the country from Karachi. Sheikh Rashid said that Pakistan Railways had converted all the railway stations into quarantine centers and installed special quarantine gates at the stations.
He said that Pakistan Railways would partially restore operation of the passenger trains after getting permission of Prime Minister Imran Khan if the situation of coronavirus would become better till April 14.
The minister said that Pakistan Railways was operating as many as 142 passenger trains across the country and all the trains operation were suspended after coronavirus in the country on the directions of prime minister.
Sheikh Rashid said that Pakistan Railways also focusing on the welfare of Coolies and they would get Rs 12,000 relief package by sending their identity card on given number by the government.
He said that Pakistan Railways had decided to seal its Mughalpura Workshop Lahore till April 12 as an outsider had visited the premises tested positive for coronavirus.
Sheikh Rashid said that Pakistan Railways would pay salaries and pension to its employees on time. He said that freight trains were operating in the country as per schedule and action would be taken on traveling through freight trains.
The minister said the maintenance and repair work of all the coaches and locomotives was completed during the suspension of train operation in the county.
To a question, the minister said that Economic Coordination Committee had directed the concerned authorities that there should be no shortage of daily commodities items on Utility Stores.
Commenting over the recent sugar, wheat scam, he said that the action would not affect relations between Imran Khan and Jehangir Tareen and the fate of those involved in the scandal would be decided on April 25.
Sheikh Rashid said that the Prime Minister Imran Khan has reshuffled the cabinet, not removed anyone and advised Jehangir Tareen to remain attached with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.