LAHORE: Two passenger trains derailed on Friday, disrupting rail traffic on the main line and delaying arrival and departure of various trains. Passengers of the trains reportedly protested on the way.
According to official sources at the Lahore-based Pakistan Railways’ headquarters, a locomotive of Karachi-bound Awam express derailed at about 11am after it entered the yard area of Khairpur Railway Station in Sindh.
“The train moved from Sukkur Railway Station at about 10pm and entered the Khairpur arrival area (outer signals) at about 11am. But as soon as it entered the area, its locomotive’s real wheals derailed,” said an official who requested anonymity.
“Resultantly the downward rail traffic suspended for almost two hours,” he added. He said a relief train which was dispatched by the Sukkur station management, finally put the locomotive at about 1pm and the train moved to its destination with a delay of two hours.
Another incident occurred at the Karachi station when 41-Up Karakoram express derailed in the yard area ahead of reaching at the platform. “It happened while the train was about to be placed at the platform after washing. Its fourth empty passenger coach to the locomotive derailed at about 2.50pm,” the official explained.
He said a relief train rushed to the spot that put the derailed coach on track. It delayed departure of train for two hours, as it moved from Karachi to Lahore at 5.30pm instead of 3.30pm. Several passengers protested as they waited for the train at the platform for two hours, he said.
Departure of various passenger trains from Lahore to various destinations are delayed almost on a daily basis due to various operational issues.
According to the official sources, the trains that moved late from Lahore on Friday included Pak Business Express and Karachi express. Both trains departed 1:15 hours and 2:30 hours late, respectively, from their actual departure time.
It is pertinent to mention that the condition of the main line (Peshawar-Karachi via Lahore), especially the Multan-Sukkur and Sukkur-Karachi sections, is dilapidated and dangerous for a safe train operation.
Published in Dawn, October 24th, 2020