- Minister says govt not privatising Pakistan Railways and ‘those talking about it are talking nonsense’
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Railways has decided to increase the fares of passenger trains by up to 10 per cent, it was learnt on Saturday. The department will soon issue a notification in this regard.
As per details, the fares of AC coaches would be increased by four to ten per cent. The new fares would not be implemented on the passengers of economy class. The fare of coaches has been increased in view of the recent hike in petroleum prices, which resulted in inflation.
The GST on petrol was increased from 2pc to 12pc, the GST on kerosene oil was increased from 8pc to 17pc while that on diesel from 13pc to 17pc.
Meanwhile, Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed dismissed rumours that the government is going to privatise Pakistan Railways.
“PR is not being privatised. Those talking about it are talking nonsense,” he asserted during a press conference in Lahore on Saturday.
The minister claimed there has been no increase in the railway’s expenses since he took the reins of the ministry, adding that scrap worth Rs1 billion was sold in one year.
He said Prime Minister Imran Khan would inaugurate a new train service, Sir Syed Express, on May 15th. “The 1800-kilometre-long double rail track would be laid while railway crossings along the track would be removed,” he added.
Rasheed lamented that influential people had controlled the department for the past 30 years.
About the ongoing talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), he said an agreement would be reached with the IMF “in a day or two”.
The minister said Prime Minister Imran Khan has convened a meeting on Monday evening to discuss a tax amnesty scheme and hoped that former finance minister Asad Umar would soon be part of the federal cabinet.
About Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s rally to give Nawaz Sharif a warm send-off upon his return to Kot Lakhpat Jail on April 6th, he said his “Iftar dinners usually draw five times more people than those who attended the rally”.
Rasheed said efforts are being made to implement the apex court’s decision with regard to removal of encroachments on the Karachi Circular Railway track within 15 days. He said the KCR can be revived through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor funding.