LAHORE: Over 40,000 passengers travelled on the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) on the first day of its operation for the general public on Monday.
Passengers could be seen standing in queues on various stations to get tickets for the train.
The Orange Line track is 27.1 kilometres long and has 26 stations, including 24 elevated and two underground. The train is operating from 7:30am to 10pm and would stop at every station for three minutes.
On the first day of operation, most of the passengers seemed to be travelling on it for recreation; they were seen making videos, taking pictures and selfies.
Some of the passengers were of the view that they were impatiently waiting for the train to begin operations. “We have not seen this kind of a train in our lives and today we are travelling on it. We give its credit to PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif,” they added.
One of the passengers, who boarded from Baghbanpura, said she was travelling to visit her sister in Samanabad and that this was not only one of the world’s safest means to travel, but affordable also. She said if she had travelled on a rickshaw it would have cost her Rs300, but she was spending Rs40 on the train.
She said governments should focus on providing services to the public and she would credit PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif for this train.
Some youths were of the view that they were travelling on the train for pleasure as they had seen this type of train in Hollywood movies only. “Although we voted Imran Khan in the 2018 elections, this world-class facility has been provided to the public by former chief minister Shehbaz Sharif,” they said.
OLMT General Manager Uzair Shah told Dawn that the train had finally begun operations for the general public. “I visited Anarkali station and checked the number of passengers travelling on the first day. I educated the people about ticketing, seating and other systems of the station and train. They were very happy to travel on it,” he claimed.
He further said the number of passengers on the first day was low as over 40,000 people travelled till 8pm. But the number would increase to the maximum in the coming days, he hoped.
Published in Dawn, October 27th, 2020