By: Muhammad Shafa
Inferno attacks continue to scarp Pakistan Railways bogies at its Cantonment Station, inflicting at least Rs 70 million losses to the national economy. According to sources, three bogies were reduced to ashes in two different fire incidents on Wednesday, taking the number of coaches burnt since last Wednesday to seven.
“All bogies were set on fire at the same place ie washing line at Karachi Cantonment Railway Station, burning seven bogies of Pakistan Express,” officials told Business Recorder. However, the government is least concerned to take notice of such recurring fire incidents at the station, giving rise to the public fears of Pakistan Railways’ deteriorating safety standards.
The last investigation carried out by Pakistan Railways had indicated involvement of terrorists in a fire incident,” sources said, adding that the area is almost unguarded with a free space for drug peddlers and addicts. Railways divisional commercial officer Nasir Nazeer told Business Recorder that a committee has been constituted to probe into the incidents of fire. “Security at the Cantonment Station has been beefed up and Special Branch personnel have been deployed there,” he added.
Chairman of Railways Workers Union Manzoor Ahmed Razi said that the police are seldom seen guarding passenger or freight trains at the station and such a situation raises a question over the vulnerability of the country’s rail transportation system. He did not rule the possibilities of involvement of anti-state elements in such incidents. He, however, praised the efforts of Federal Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafiq in turning the losses-incurring Railways into a profit-earning organisation.
Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Niaz was clueless about any possible involvement behind the incidents. “It would be too early to say anything in this regard, he said, adding that the evidence collected from the crime-scene has been sent to Lahore for laboratory tests.”
Source: Business Recorder