(MENAFN – Tribal News Network) PESHAWAR: Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed in his meeting with the provincial minister for finance Taimur Salim Jhagra, said that efforts are underway to restore Khyber steam safari train that will not only promote tourism but will generate job opportunities for tribal people.
Shaikh said that now the time is not away when the tourist’s train will be back on rails as the shopkeepers along the route have already been served notices to vacate the area and vacate the government area for the historical train.
During meeting with Minister for Finance Taimur Saleem Khan Jhagra, the federal railway minister further added that feasibility report has already been prepared by the railway officails to help the provincial government in their effort to promote tourism in the province.
According to railway officials, the complete restoration of the track will cost Rs 1.5 billion but still, there is no agreement who will arrange the money. The railway minister said that the arrangement of the mode of financing will be made through different options in consultation with the KP Tourism Department, after which the project would be executed.
The railway track from Peshawar to Torkham was constructed by the British government however, it could not be used. The government of Pakistan has started the tourism train to take tourism to mountainous areas of Torkham. However, after 2007 that damages most of the rail infrastructure in Khyber, tourism train comes to a complete halt.
Sheikh Rashid said that a high-level delegation of Pakistan Railways has visited 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.
The provincial Minister for Finance Taimur Jhagra has 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.