Technical problems removed in new locomotives: Saad Rafique

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique Wednesday rejected the perception that the locomotives imported from China had failed and said there were minor defects which were rectified.

Responding to a question during question hour of the Senate, the minister said it was unfortunate that

the media created hype about the issue without giving the version of the ministry.

He said as many as 14, out of 58, locomotives had been imported from China so far, backed by two years warranty.

“Out of three new locomotives, there were electrical faults in two which were rectified by the Railways engineers, while the other having software problem will be fixed by the Chinese company,” Saad Rafique mentioned.

The minister further said it was for the first time that fully computerized locomotives were installed. “The government is keeping eye over these engines and will not compromise on quality,” he categorically stated.

Saad Rafique said neither any railway section was closed nor opened during last 11 months, adding, the previous government closed some sections mainly due to revenue problems.

“The railways ministry is striving to streamline the working  of railways as we believe on quality not quantity,” he added.

He further said the average time of delay per train which was 2 hour and 30 minutes in year 2012 had been reduced to 1 hour and 30 minutes in 2013.

The minister said the coming 50 to 60 days of summer were crucial but after that the delay would further reduce.

Some of the steps taken for running trains on scheduled time include procurement of 58 new locomotives, rehabilitation of 27 locomotives, doubling of track from Lodhran to Raiwind, installation of computer based signaling equipment on Shahdara Bagh-Lodhran section and Bin Qasim to Mirpur Mathelo sections, improved track maintenance to increase speed of trains and improved washing lines facilities, he added.