Bring in trains

Southasia - - EDITOR'S MAIL - Yamin Az­mat Kabul, Afghanistan

The ar­ti­cle on the rail­way net­work in Afghanistan (or the ab­sence of it) was an in­ter­est­ing read. Afghanistan is one of the few coun­tries in the world that don’t have a rail­ways in­fra­struc­ture. How­ever, in Afghanistan’s case, the sit­u­a­tion is more de­plorable since it is a land­locked coun­try. But it is the people of Afghanistan, es­pe­cially the rulers, who are to blame for this sit­u­a­tion. Var­i­ous Afghan lead­ers have of­ten op­posed the con­struc­tion of a rail­way line, fear­ing that for­eign pow­ers could use it to threaten the coun­try’s in­de­pen­dence. In fact, Afghanistan’s for­mer king Amir Ab­dul Rehman once de­scribed the Bri­tish­built line to Chaman as “a knife pushed into my vi­tals”.

But now times are chang­ing. The Afghans must re­al­ize that if they have to sur­vive and progress, they need rail­way lines in the coun­try. The ab­sence of rail­way lines only wors­ens the trans­porta­tion of goods and people in the coun­try which has a poor road net­work. Fears such as for­eign pow­ers us­ing the rail­ways to carry out their ne­far­i­ous ac­tiv­i­ties are base­less since for­eign pow­ers have at­tacked the coun­try and oc­cu­pied it for decades – all in the ab­sence of rail­way lines. So I think it is time the Afghans must re­al­ize what is good for them. It is hoped that the new govern­ment will take se­ri­ously the chal­lenge of set­ting up a rail­way net­work across the coun­try.

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