–PML-N says OLMT was the brainchild of former Punjab CM Shehbaz Sharif and their party’s government
LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar on Sunday inaugurated the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT), and said that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will further strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.
Addressing the inaugural ceremony of the project, the chief minister thanked the Chinese government for extending support to provide world class transport facilities to the people of Lahore.
Orange Line Metro Train is the first electricity-run public transport project to transport around 250,000 commuters daily through a 27.12 kilometres long track with 26 stations.
The chief minister said that Orange Line Metro Train is the first transport project under CPEC which is also a symbol of Pakistan-China friendship and a gift for the people of Lahore. He invited Chinese companies and investors to invest in different sectors of the province.
The Orange Line trains will run from 07:30 am to 08:30 pm. The fare charged for a one-way trip will be Rs40. Experts from China have trained Pakistani drivers on how to operate the train whereas the Lahore Waste Management Company will be responsible for the train’s cleanliness.
The trains, which will be run on electricity, will be provided power by eight grid stations. According to sources, the operational time of the trains will be extended to 16 hours. Cameras have been installed on all routes of the train and inside it as well. The project took five years to complete.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders Khawaja Saad Rafique and Ayaz Sadiq also held a separate inauguration ceremony of the project, claiming that it was the brainchild of former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif and the PML-N government.
“The government had been thinking all along not to give credit for the Orange Line train project to Nawaz Sharif,” said Sadiq. Criticising the PTI’s Peshawar Metro Bus project, he said that the buses are not consistent in their performance. “Peshawar’s metro buses run, then stop. Then run and then stop [again],” he said.
Lamenting the rise of inflation across the country, Sadiq said that the masses were waiting for the incumbent government to be sent home. “That time is not far away when we will be rid of this government,” he added.
Attacking Prime Minister Imran Khan, Sadiq said that the premier’s thinking is “limited”.
“First I used to come in the prime minister’s dreams. Now, he sees Nawaz Sharif in his dreams,” said Sadiq. He appealed to the people of Lahore to ensure the PDM’s upcoming gathering in the city turns out to be a successful one, promising the masses that the December “will be a decisive month” for the government.
‘CPEC BELONGS TO PAKISTANIS, NOT TO ANY PARTY’:
Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz has said that CPEC is the project of the people of Pakistan and not of any specific party.
In a tweet on Sunday, Faraz said that PML-N’s leaders who are under the radar of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) are actually celebrating the plundering of national exchequer and public resources on the self-proclaimed inauguration of OLMT. He said that it is the people who bear the burden of expensive projects.
He also said that the opposition parties are doing negative politics by levelling baseless allegations against the government to hide their corruption. He said that the previous government of PML-N destroyed national institutions while the incumbent government is revamping and restructuring them.
The minister said the government is also effectively working to resolve all issues including bringing down inflation to provide relief to the common man. He said that the PML-N has nothing to do with democracy as their leaders are involved in massive corruption and now are absconders.
Faraz said that the opposition parties will not succeed in concealing their corruption and escaping from the accountability process.
Picture: Zubair Mehfooz