LAHORE: Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid claims that no one except Shahbaz Sharif is seeking an NRO. “I say under oath that I have not seen anyone seeking an NRO. Only Shahbaz Sharif is asking for one,” he told reporters at his weekly press conference at the Pakistan Railways (PR) headquarters on Saturday.

About the issue of giving extension to the military courts, he said the opposition (PML-N and PPP) desired a bargain. “But I believe that the PML-N will vote in favour of military courts as it is trying to increase its importance these days,” he said and added: “And let’s see what the PPP does as it insists on not voting in favour of the military courts,” he said.

He said he had sent a message to Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari to become Bhutto and not Zardari.

Sheikh Rashid said he had written a letter to the government for becoming a member of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC). “It is my right to become the PAC member since I am the most senior politician. Let’s see what decision the Supreme Court gives on this issue on Monday (tomorrow),” he said.

“I am coming to the PAC and stop me if you can,” he said.

Talking about the ongoing development in his department, the minister said the PR was all set to introduce a new tracking system that would be inaugurated by PM Imran Khan. The PR admin would also inaugurate operations of two new freight trains from Karachi. He warned the people to avoid travelling by trains without ticket as they would have to stay for 24 hours in the lockup besides paying fines.

“We have received Rs60 million in a week through fines on those travelling without tickets. Such passengers would also have to stay for 24 hours in the lockup,” he added.

He said he would travel by train during next month on a daily basis. “I will also stay at the railway stations on the way (if required) for solving the public problems,” he said.

Published in Dawn, January 20th, 2019