Peshawar-Torkham track to create opportunities for erstwhile FATA people: Sheikh Rashid

ISLAMABAD, May 3 (APP):Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed Friday said that the revival of railway track from Peshawar-Torkham would create opportunities for the people of the erstwhile FATA, bringing them into mainstream.

During meeting with Minister for Finance Taimur Saleem Khan Jhagra of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the minister said that the track would help promote tourism.

Feasibility study would be examined and on arrangement of mode of financing through different options in consultation with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Tourism Department, the project would be executed, he added.

Sheikh Rashid said it was a fact that railway track from Peshawar-Torkham Border was not in use mainly due to the fact that track was damaged in the flash floods during 2007.

He said that reconstruction of British-era railway track at Torkham leading to Afghanistan by Ministry of Railways would help bring more opportunities for business community on both sides of the Durand Line.

The minister said the administration had already given notice to shopkeepers and other encroachers along the railway track to vacate Pakistan Railways property shortly so that restoration work could begin.

Sheikh Rashid said that a high level delegation of Pakistan Railways had also visited the dilapidated track recently, in order to check either this project was workable or not.

Running along the historic Khyber Pass Route, the track had been built between 1901 and 1925 and it was declared as the `lifeline of connectivity’, the minister added.

Minister for Finance offered all out support to Pakistan Railways for the restoration of the track by the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa which would promote tourism in the areas.