ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Railways was facing several problems in completion of rehabilitation work on Sibi-Harnai (95km) and Harnai-Khost (39km) sections due to law and order situation, but hopefully the section will be completed during this year.
“Around 90 per cent work has been completed on both sections and the department is taking many steps to complete the sections as soon as possible,” sources in the Ministry of Railways told APP.
The Harnai-Khost (39km) section was scheduled to be completed in February 2018 but due to the non-release of funds and slow development work the department was not able to complete rehabilitation work on time, they added. During the last five years, the Ministry of Railways has actively pursued the revival of Pakistan Railways infrastructure and had undertaken steps to rebuild the Sibi-Harnai and Harnai-Khost sections.
They said that the Pakistan Railways had already rehabilitated Kohat-Rawalpindi rail track besides renovating and rehabilitating four railway stations, two each in Rawalpindi and Peshawar divisions to facilitate the passengers of the Kohat Express.
The service was abandoned in 2013. Now, Pakistan Railways had re-launched the train service between Rawalpindi-Kohat to provide cheaper travelling facilities to the people of Kohat, the sources said.
To a question, they said, the Pakistan Railways had however not closed any existing routes during the last five years.
They said that there were proposals under consideration for laying new railway track from Gwadar to Besima and Jacobabad via Khuzdar and Zhob, DI Khan Kotla Jam, adding that PC-II for feasibility studies for proposed new rail links had been approved.
To another question, they said that feasibility study for upgradation and extension of ML-III in connection with the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was being undertaken and the proposed link started from Bostan (an existing station on Quetta-Chaman Line, 33km from Quetta) and linked DI Khan via Zhob.
The right of way from Bostan to Zhob (262km) was already available, they said, adding that the alignment would further connect with Kotla Jam (an existing station on Shershah-Kundian Line) from DI Khan.
They said that overall length of the line would be 472km and estimated cost would be around Rs252 billion. The feasibility study for this link was carried out during 2003-04 which is now being revalidated.