ML-1 upgradation


ONE important CPEC project that has faced prolonged delay is start of work on upgradation of main railway line from Karachi to Peshawar. Indeed it is a mega connectivity project that will transform and modernise railway infrastructure of Pakistan and several factors including its financing hindered rapid progress on it.
At long last it appears that obstacles in its way have been removed as Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid while addressing a news conference in Lahore on Saturday stated that an agreement with China for upgradation of the ML-1 would be signed next month. We have no doubt in saying that this is one of the most important projects under the CPEC portfolio which will go a long way in addressing problems currently faced by Pakistan Railways. The completion of project will significantly reduce travel time between Karachi and Peshawar and this will not only considerably increase freight volume of Pakistan Railways but commuters will also get state-of-the-art rail travelling facilities.
We are confident that Chinese companies will complete work on the mega project within the stipulated period as was also seen in the construction of road infrastructure projects and establishment of power plants in first phase of the CPEC. Keeping in view upgradation of main line, Pakistan Railways also need to induct new and modern locomotives, passenger coaches and freight wagons. This induction in fact could also be made part of the ML-1 project.