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CM reviews rapid transit system project

LAHORE – Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif on Friday, reviewed the progress of the transport projects initiated in the province, including the bus rapid transit system.

He was presiding over a meeting at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat which was attended by Saleem Celik and Idrees, the representatives of Turkish company Ulasam. Addressing the meeting, the chief minister said the provision of modern and economical transport facilities to the masses was a priority for the government. He stated that a modern bus service has been launched in the provincial metropolis which will be extended to Rawalpindi, Multan, Faisalabad, Gujranwala and Bahawalpur.

He added that the Lahore Bus Rapid Transit System project, undertaken in collaboration with Turkey, was an example of the Pak-Turk friendship.

The CM said the technical committee headed by the Planning and Development chairman, will monitor the e-ticketing system and training of the staff. He stated that the transport system and its related issues would be reviewed twice a week.

He added that the technical committee and the Turk experts had approved the design of the fences and bus stations and that work was in progress.

Sharif said two bus stations at Naseerabad and Phatak (railway crossing) at the Ferozepur Road will be completed by March 12 and will be inaugurated by the mayor of Istanbul.

He added that like other development schemes, the transport project would be of the highest standard and third-party validation would also be conducted.

The meeting was informed that construction of the bus rapid transit system tracks from Kalma Chowk to Yuhanabad on the Ferozepur Road was in progress and that 10 bus stations, parking lots and greenbelts will be constructed in this phase.

Saleem Celik said the ITS system was of vital importance for running a rapid bus service. He added that the ITS system installed in Lahore would be superior to the one being used in Istanbul. Provincial Assembly Member Mehr Ishtiaq Ahmad, Planning and Development chairman, Finance, Transport, Housing departments’ secretaries, Lahore commissioner and district coordination officer and LDA director general and Brig Shahid Majeed of NLC also attended the meeting.

Sharif says active police necessary for peaceful society: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif said on Friday that an active and alert police force plays a key role in establishing a safe society.

He was attending a certificate distribution ceremony for the officers who had completed training courses at the Elite Police Training School on Bedian Road.

He said Punjab police officers should rein in oppressors so that the masses could live peacefully. He said the government, in collaboration with Turkey, had initiated a counter terrorism training programme for the Elite Force, under which the personnel will be trained in Lahore and Turkey.650 officers participated in the 15-day training course.

The chief minister said the Pakistan Muslim League-N government laid the foundation of the Elite Police Training School in 1997 to training the personnel for fighting criminals and anti-nation elements. He added that the Elite Force had been neglected in the past and that when he assumed power in 2008, there was no commandant or trainers in the school.

Sharif said he was grateful to the Chief of Army Staff Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kayani who provided the necessary assistance for the professional training of the Elite Force. He appreciated the cooperation of Turkey for the training programme and said Turkey’s government and people are always ready to help Pakistan. DIG Zulfiqar Cheema presented the address of welcome. Provincial Assembly Member Col (R) Shuja Khanzada, Home Secretary Shahid Khan, Elite Police Training School commandant and other police officers were also present at the occasion. The Chief Minister also presented shields to the Turkish master trainers and appreciated their services.

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