Punjab comes to a halt after major roads get ‘contained’

Published May 25, 2022
PEOPLE face problems after the authorities closed the road leading to the Ravi bridge by placing containers on it to stop the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s ‘Haqiqi Azadi March’. — White Star/M Arif
PEOPLE face problems after the authorities closed the road leading to the Ravi bridge by placing containers on it to stop the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s ‘Haqiqi Azadi March’. — White Star/M Arif

LAHORE: People faced inconvenience after roads leading to Islamabad-Rawalpindi from Lahore and other cities were blocked by the government with containers at entry/exit points on Tuesday.

On the other hand, the closure of intercity public transport service, mainly on the routes from Lahore and other major cities to the twin cities, left the passengers marooned, leaving them with no option but to throng railway stations in Punjab.

“I found no bus for Rawalpindi here, as the service has been closed,” a passenger deplored at a bus terminal near Yateem Khana.

“I am not going to Rawalpindi to attend the PTI rally. Tomorrow I have to appear in an interview for a job. How will I reach there?”

Talking to Dawn, a motorist said the government should at least allow transport for those going to twin cities for their personal or official works.

“When I came here, I found this exit point blocked by placing heavy containers. Now, you tell me which route I should take to reach Islamabad now as I have heard, all entry/exit points of Lahore have been sealed,” he said.

On the other hand, various major roads, including motorways, were closed for the twin cities. According to reports, the motorways — M-2 (Lahore-Islamabad), M-3 (Multan-Lahore) and M-4 (Multan-Faisalabad-Pindi Bhattian) and all interchanges and roads to the twin cities - have also been closed. The River Chenab bridge in Gujrat has also been blocked with the placement of containers, disconnecting Lahore from Gujranwala.

The closure of roads has left rail as the only means to travel in Punjab.

“We had a huge rush of passengers on Tuesday, as all trains from Lahore to Rawalpindi onward were departed jam-packed,” a spokesman for the Pakistan Railways (Lahore Division) told Dawn.

He said the train operation would remain continued as there is no instruction (to close it or not) received from the government so far. However, most of the passengers at the Lahore Railway Station could not get confirmed reservations on the trains scheduled for Rawalpindi.

“After waiting for many hours, I couldn’t get the ticket. However, my friend succeeded in getting a ticket for the 4.30pm Rail Car train for Rawalpindi,” said a passenger.

While the people faced trouble with mobility, they also suffered due to long queues at various petrol pumps in Lahore.

“I’ve been in the queue for the last 20 minutes, but I have yet to get petrol,” said a motorist at a petrol pump in the city.

“I have some petrol already, but I want to get more as I have heard there might be no petrol available at the pumps on Wednesday,” he added.

Published in Dawn, May 25th, 2022

Opinion

Editorial

Miftah’s misery
Updated 06 Jul, 2022

Miftah’s misery

It cannot be easy to be finance minister in times like these, with friend and foe alike gunning for you over difficult decisions.
Phone tapping
06 Jul, 2022

Phone tapping

IT is the season of audio leaks. No sooner does one ‘incriminating’ clip lose its shock value than another...
Transgender job quota
06 Jul, 2022

Transgender job quota

IN a society where transgender persons often face violence and abuse, the Sindh Assembly’s decision to reserve a...
Warming ties
05 Jul, 2022

Warming ties

BILATERAL ties with the US are clearly on the mend after an extensive rough patch under the PTI government. While ...
LNG emergency
Updated 05 Jul, 2022

LNG emergency

The problem is that Pakistan does not have sufficient cash at the moment to buy even a single LNG cargo at present prices.
The invisible half
05 Jul, 2022

The invisible half

WHAT better illustrates the Afghan Taliban’s misogynistic and mediaeval worldview than the fact that not a single...