Trans­port Woes

Enterprise - - LETTERS - Ab­dul Hayee Karachi

There has been much noise about the Metro Bus Ser­vice that Shah­baz Sharif in­tro­duced in La­hore while he was the chief min­is­ter. A sim­i­lar ser­vice is be­ing en­vis­aged for other cities of the Pun­jab. How­ever, pro­vi­sion of trans­port fa­cil­i­ties in the broader sense cov­er­ing all parts of Pak­istan and com­pris­ing other means as well, have not been taken up by any govern­ment in right earnest. The new Rail­ways min­is­ter, Khawaja Saad Rafiq, prom­ises to bring about vis­i­ble im­prove­ments in the sys­tem in the next years and the govern­ment is look­ing for a new man­ag­ing di­rec­tor to re­or­ga­nize PIA.

The govern­ment is al­ready con­fronted with other is­sues such as set­ting the econ­omy right, bring­ing about good gov­er­nance and tack­ling the en­ergy mon­ster that has gone out of con­trol. No re­spon­si­ble govern­ment func­tionary has so far fo­cused on think­ing on the lines of in­tro­duc­ing an in­te­grated trans­port pol­icy that would ad­dress the is­sues of the masses, with spe­cial ref­er­ence to the prob­lems they face in the ur­ban cen­ters, both large and small, as well as in­ter-city travel. There are ef­forts in iso­la­tion, such as re­viv­ing the Karachi Cir­cu­lar Rail­way but even those are tak­ing ages to come to fruition. With the coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion burst­ing at the seams, it has al­ready be­come im­per­a­tive that bet­ter and more work­able pro­grams must be de­vised to meet mass trans­port needs. Merely let­ting ’trans­port mafias’ han­dle the de­mand in their own fash­ion and to their en­tire ad­van­tage will not work for much long.

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