LAHORE: The Punjab government is working on a proposal for the establishment of a dedicated transport police for the entire Orange Line metro train and bus operations in Lahore, Rawalpindi/ Islamabad and Multan.
The government has also started preparing for a Rs3 billion mega project of a state-of-the-art bus terminal near Thokar Niaz Beg, according to a senior official of the transport department.
“In developed countries like the UK, subways, metro bus systems have a dedicated transport police for the safety of passengers and maintaining law and order.
But we have no such arrangement, as security guards are performing this important job. So we are seriously working on establishing a special police [force] for this purpose,” Transport Secretary Syed Ali Murtaza told Dawn.
“The police will perform duty at all the stations of Orange Line and metro buses. Deployment of police may also be made inside the vehicles.”
Rs3bn state-of-the-art bus terminal near Thokar also being planned
He said though inspectors and subinspectors were already deployed, but they were not enough to meet the increasing demand. The existing Jinnah terminal near Thokar Niaz Beg also could not cater to the large number of passengers.
Therefore, the department had started working on a proposal to establish a terminal of international standards, as desired by Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and Transport Minister Jahanzeb Khan Khichi. Meanwhile, Mr Khichi, in a meeting with transport experts on Tuesday, said the department will recruit transport inspectors, subinspectors and sergeants to introduce holistic reforms to provide the best services to commuters. “A sum of Rs700 million is being spent on the security of metro buses and Orange train.
But we will reduce the cost to Rs400m and the saved money will be spent on public welfare,” he maintained. He said the new bus terminal would be constructed on 100 kanal near Thokar Niaz Beg and Rs3bn spent on it.
“Bus stands in all major cities are also being upgraded to facilitate passengers, including women and children. New terminals will also be constructed in Faisalabad and Multan in the next phase,” he concluded. PHA: The Parks and Horticulture Authority (PHA) director general has announced that the Jashn-i- Baharan, to be held on March 1, will comprise more than 10 programmes, including a dog show, cat show, mural painting, storytelling, vintage car rally, poetry, birds show, calligraphy, fi reworks and bicycle race.
“Covid-19 SOPs must be enforced in all the Jashn-i-Baharan-related activities. Moreover, there should be strict security arrangements for the public during the event,” Director General Jawad Qureshi directed offi cers during a meeting.
Published in Dawn, February 17th, 2021