Pakistan Railways (PR) has requested more than Rs120 billion for the repair and reconstruction of its damaged communication infrastructure as a result of the recent extreme floods in various regions of the country.
According to a Railways spokesman, the department expects to spend Rs433 billion on the construction of 259 new ones, as well as the rehabilitation of over 1,100 damaged bridges and culverts in Sindh and Balochistan.
According to sources, the Railways Civil Engineering Department has requested Rs. 53 billion to repair the signal system, Rs. 60 billion to repair 33 partially damaged railway stations, and Rs. 6 billion to repair communication towers.
According to a source, the signal system has also suffered substantial damage in the divisions of Lahore, Karachi, Multan, and Sukkur as a result of the unexpected rains and floods that have afflicted most of the country.
The floods caused substantial damage to the railway in Punjab, Balochistan, and Sindh. According to data, 1,446 railroad bridges and culverts were damaged, with 3,187 kilometres of track destroyed.
Since August, the department has discontinued train service and is gradually reinstating it. Work on restoring railway rails was well underway, according to sources, with the support of the relevant departments.
The agency has dispatched technical bridge employees to various areas to repair the broken bridges, and train service will not resume until the bridge reconstruction is completed.
In addition to maintenance, the Railways planned to modernise all of its trains and stations around the country in order to better serve consumers and raise income.
According to officials, a fleet of 20 cutting-edge coaches from China would arrive in Pakistan by the end of this month, ensuring comfortable travel.
According to a Ministry of Railways spokesman, “Pakistan Railways has ordered 230 new passenger coaches from China, which will not only help passengers but also increase revenue for the division.”
“The department has created a plan to replace outdated and outmoded signal equipment from the Lodhran-Multan-Khanewal-Shandara Bagh mainline stretch during the current fiscal year,” he stated.
“A Computer Based Interlocking (CBI) over the Shandadpur-Mirpur Mathelo and Lodhran-Shandara Bagh segment automates the signalling system at 44 stations,” the spokesman explained.
According to the official, the Railways Ministry’s budget for the current fiscal year 2022-2023 already includes Rs21,712 million for a project titled “Procurement and Manufacturing of 230 Passenger Coaches.”
Another project for which Pakistan Railways has allocated up Rs 1 billion was the replacement of antiquated signal equipment on the Lodhran-Multan-Khanewal-Shandara Bagh mainline stretch.