The Pakistan Railways on Monday signed an agreement with two Chinese companies – M/s Easyway and M/s Norinco International Cooperation – for the launch of Railway Automated Booking and Travel Assistance (RABTA).
Talking to the media at Railways Headquarters, Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique termed the initiative a win-win situation for the department. He said that M/s Easyway Company and M/s Norinco were doing a joint venture.
Rafique said the initiative would help passengers plan their journey from their homes. The application would help passengers manage their tickets, seats, booking, food, hotel and taxi-related matters, he added.
"This IT-based solution is not only for passengers' facilitation but for maintaining railways income record earned through ticketing,” he further said.
The minister said that under the application, parcel booking and tracking facility would be available whereas passengers would also be able to access trains operation management system.
Rafique said the initiative was based on revenue sharing. He termed RABTA an important step to modernise railways operation. He said that soon train would be operated on Sibi-Harnai section, which he added would have a positive impact on the economy of four districts there.
He said a sub-office of railways had been opened in Gwadar adding that no port could work efficiently without railways.
He added that efforts were being made to minimise or overcome the delay in pensions and salaries.
Rafique said that railways furnace would be operational by the month of April.
Regarding railways shops, he said that policy was being made in this regard, adding that "besides earning revenue, we have to provide employment opportunities as well".
Trains were also being evaluated as their upgradation was needed, he further said.
About Main Line-1, the minister said that 40 percent cost-cutting of the project would make it viable.
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