Involving private sector in train operations to stabilise railway revenue, says CEO

LAHORE   -   The public-private partnership model is successful worldwide, and we are heading in that direction. Involving the private sector in train operations will not only enhance facilities for passengers but also stabilize railway revenue. These thoughts were expressed by Pakistan Railways CEO Amir Ali Baloch while responding to public queries in an e-Kachehri (online meeting).  Private operators will have to meet our established standards to run trains, he said. “Relevant officers have been instructed to ensure that the air conditioning in AC coaches remains operational without interruption. Railway employees have breathed life into the organization with their hard work, and now the wheels of the train will keep moving.” he added. Amir Baloch stated that we cannot continue operating any loss-making train or stop at any location that does not meet the minimum revenue benchmark. He mentioned that all available resources are currently in use, which reflects the passengers’ trust in us. We will strive to meet our passengers’ expectations. This year is one of increasing facilities, and we aim to boost income through freight and other railway means, he said.The CEO announced that two projects for ML-2 have been approved for the fiscal year 2024-25. We will work on these projects to improve the track and run more trains on ML-2, he said. Amir Baloch also mentioned that the Sir Syed Express, running between Rawalpindi and Karachi, will be resumed from September 1.

He said that Shalimar Express already has enough stops, and no additional stops can be added. Regarding the request to change the route of the Millat Express, Amir Baloch said that this train is running with 100pc booking and is profitable, so neither its route nor its timing can be changed. He added that premium dining cars and air-conditioned restrooms are being well-received, and more premium lounge dining cars will be added to other trains. Additionally, air-conditioned executive restrooms will be built at 13 major stations within the next three months. The e-Kachehri received over 6,000 comments and was viewed by more than 6000 accounts.

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