Federal Minister for Railways, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed on Tuesday expressed fear to announce suspension of passengers trains following coronavirus spread in near future.
“We are discussing suspension of passenger trains with PM Imran Khan. And after getting PM Advise, Pakistan Railways would be able to announce suspension of passenger trains due to epidemic COVID-19,” he said while talking to a private news channel.
Sheikh Rashid said that at least 40 passenger trains were already suspended, however, 108 trains were still on tracks.
He said that Pakistan Railways earned from passengers to pay the salaries of railway staff and ,middle and poor class used railways as effective tool of transportation.
The minister said that the Sindh government did not inform prior to the Ministry of Railways about lock down, causing panic for passengers.
“It was dire need to continue freight trains as it was mandatory to shift crops, edibles and other items from one place to other parts of the country,” he said.
He said that Pakistan Railways earned Rs10 billion profit during last fiscal year and after payment of petroleum charges and procurement of engines, it successfully saved Rs. 4bn.