PM vows to modernize Pakistan Railways with China’s help

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PM vows to modernize Pakistan Railways with China's help
RAWALPINDI: Mr Thomas Drew, British High Commissioner in Islamabad called on General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) on Thursday at GHQ to discuss matters of mutual interests including regional security situation.

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan says Pakistan Railways will be developed on modern lines with the cooperation of China to provide inexpensive travel facilities to the poor people.
He was addressing the inaugural ceremony of Rawalpindi Express and Mianwali Rail Car in Islamabad on Friday afternoon.The Prime Minister said rail tracks will be laid across the country to cover all the downtrodden areas.The Prime Minister said the government has focused on uplifting standard of the common man.
He said Karachi to Peshawar railway track, which is called Main Line-1, is being laid under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He said China has the most advanced railway technology, and during his upcoming visit to China in November this year, cooperation in railway development will be sought.
Meanwhile, addressing the bureaucrats Prime Minister Imran Khan said a system that works on merit is unmatched and we will make sure we protect our bureaucracy from political pressure.
Addressing the civil servants in Islamabad on Friday, he said the practice of transfers on political grounds is massively disruptive. The Prime Minister pointed out that political interference over the years has degenerated the country’s bureaucracy which was considered as a pride of the country in the era of 60s.
Regarding Railways, the Premier said that Railways’ land illegally occupied by mafias will be retrieved. He, however, clarified that the poor who have settled at Railways’ land in makeshift arrangements will not be disturbed. He said the recovered land will be sold to repay Railway’s loans.
Criticizing the previous governments for introducing incentives for the rich, the Prime Minister said PTI government will do its best to provide maximum facilities to the poor. He said 15 buildings, including Prime Minster House and Governor Houses, will now be better used after being converted into universities, museums and public parks.
Earlier addressing the ceremony, Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said two new trains will be introduced for the people of Sindh from 16th of the next month. He said a new train from Peshawar to Karachi will also be launched soon.He said efforts are being made to increase Pakistan Railways freight.
He said Ministry for Railways is planning to launch Rehman Baba Express from Peshawar to Karachi to facilitate poor people travel facilities at a cost of 1,000 rupees per person.
Regarding civil servants, Prime Minister said: “We have seen all kinds of challenges and countries coming out of crisis. Germany and Japan were destroyed by war, but they rose back up in 10 years because the nation and governments were on same page,” he added.
“When people take ownership of your country, they become the protectors of everything to do the country; an army of 200 million. We need to step outside of a colonial mindset.”
We need to believe that it is our responsibility to serve the people of Pakistan, he added.
“We are auctioning dozens of cars, helicopters. I don’t live in the PM house. The symbolism of all this is important to change our mindset. When we need to spend every rupee on the children and people of our country,” the premier remarked.
PM Khan said accountability is the cornerstone of the government.
“I spoke to chairman NAB; and I have told them whatever investigations happen, against our bureaucracy even, do not humiliate anyone in the process, do it subtly,” he said.
The Prime Minister highlighted that none of the reform programs will be implementable without a robust bureaucracy. The PTI government will be taking huge risks, and mistakes may happen. But everyone makes mistakes; and we will stand with you and ensure that no wrong pressure is levied on you.
“Whatever your political affiliation may be; if you like Imran Khan or PTI or not? I am not concerned. I am only concerned by your performance. If you work for the country, we will stand by you and support you,” the PM assured civil servants.-NNI