80% Concession on Rail fare given to Journalists will remain intact in outsourced trains under PPP mode.

Lahore 28th August 2021: Pakistan Railways Chief Executive Officer Nisar Ahmad Memon has said that concessions given to 17 categories on rail travel including journalists will continue in the outsourced trains. Pakistan Railways has recently offered to outsource 34 commercial trains of which 17 trains have received biddings which will be finalized this week. Talking to media at Railway Headquarters Office Lahore, Chief Executive Officer Pakistan Railways Nisar Ahmad Memon said that the management of commercial outsourced trains would be allowed to increase fares by a maximum of 10% but they could reduce it at their own discretion. The service and quality of trains will be improved under new agreement. He said that orders have been placed for 230 coaches delivery will be started in the next six months. There will be rail stocks for 15 trains. A project for rehabilitation of 600 coaches has also been initiated. As soon as the coaches will be available, one of the Akbar Bugti Express or Bolan Mail train will be restored in October. In addition, the railway system is being transformed. Under RABTA (Contact) system providing a range of facilities including, online booking, taxi, food and messaging etc through this system. In addition, stalls of national and international food chains will be set up at each station. He further said that this year Rs 1.5 billion has been saved as compared to last year but due to 130,000 pensioners the situation has not improved much. During the last year, the revenue was Rs 50 billion and the expenditure was Rs 95 billion. During the last year, Rs 38 billion was paid in pension. Due to which there is an annual deficit of Rs 45 billion. Replying to the questions of the journalists, Additional General Manager Traffic Syed Mazhar Ali Shah said that there are three corridors of the railway in which Gwadar and DI Khan will be connected with the railway and in the other. Gwadar to Basima, Basima to Khuzdar and Khuzdar to the main line and the third line from Basima to Mastung, Mastung to Quetta, Quetta to Bostan via Sob and Dera Ismail Khan to Peshawar. This will reduce the distance between Quetta and Peshawar by 950 km. "In 1972, 20 per cent of the total revenue of the railways was spent on salaries and pensions, but in 2010 the pension was Rs 11-12 billion and now it is more than Rs 35 billion," he said. Pakistan Railway is providing great facility of transporting coal through trains. At least 2400 ton of coal is being transported from Karachi to Sahiwal through train. If the same amount of coal is transported through trucks, it would have created problems for road users by traffic blockage. At the end of the ceremony, Chief Executive Officer Pakistan Railways Nisar Ahmad Memon reiterated at the request of reporters that a meeting with Railway beat Reporters would be held every month to strengthen mutual relations as well as discuss issues and suggestions to improve the service of Railway. The meeting was attended by Chief Executive Officer Pakistan Railways Nisar Ahmad Memon, Additional General Manager Traffic Syed Mazhar Ali Shah, Director Legal Affairs Farooq Iqbal Malik, Chief Marketing Manager Kashif Rasheed Yousfani and Director Public Relations Nazia Jabeen.