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RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi division of Pakistan Railways will plant nearly 150,000 saplings under the 2018 Monsoon Tree Plantation Campaign at 100 railway stations, Railways colonies, platforms and other parts of the division.

Speaking to this agency, Railways Rawalpindi Divisional Commercial Officer Raza Ali Habib said 50,000 saplings of Bohar, Sukh Chain, Neem, Mulberry, Sada Bahar, Arjun, Sheesham and other species will be planted in the first phase of the project.

In response to a question, he said the division had earned Rs3.4 billion during 2017-18, with 5.4 million passengers travelling by train, because of the continuous efforts and hard work of the Railways management, officers and workers.

Mr Habib said Railways overall generated Rs48.59bn in 2017-18 and Rs38bn in 2016-17. In 2012-13, he said, Railways’ income was Rs18bn; many initiatives were taken by the management to improve the situation, he added.

To a question he said the Rawalpindi division earned over Rs185m through its e-ticketing facility in 2017-18; 138,031 passengers booked tickets through the e-ticketing system, which was used by approximately 2.1m people overall.

Railways generated over Rs2.71bn in revenue from e-ticketing in 2017-18.

The e-ticketing facility is now available for all passenger trains, Mr Habib said, adding that the online booking system had ended black market ticket sales and improved the Railways accounting system.

Passengers can book and pay for tickets using computers or mobile phones with the digital ticketing system, he said.

The digital system has increased seat capitalisation and lowered chances of corruption, he said in response to a question.

The division has also completed a number of projects to improve security, upgrade its system and facilitate passengers.

To another question he said that of the total 46 trains running from the Rawalpindi division 40 – including the Green Line, Tezgam, Pakistan Express, Hazara Express, eight Lahore Railcars, Mehar Express and Kohat Railcar begin their journeys from Rawalpindi while six, including Khyber Mail, Awam Express and Jaffar Express, start in Peshawar and cross through the division.

Published in Dawn, August 6th, 2018