Sun, Apr 23, 2017 | updated 03:26 PM IST

Pakistan can't afford bullet trains, says Railway Minister

Updated: Nov 30, 2016 17:57 IST      
Pakistan can't afford bullet trains, says Railway Minister

Islamabad [Pakistan], Nov. 30 (ANI): Pakistan Railway Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique has informed the National Assembly that the country cannot afford to have bullet trains.

"When we asked the Chinese about it, they laughed at us. We should consider the 160 kmph train under CPEC as a bullet train. We can't afford an actual bullet train, there's no market for it," the Dawn quoted Rafique, as saying.

Asserting that Pakistan does not have enough money to launch a bullet train project, the Railway Minister said that even if they launch it, they don't have such a big range of upper and middle class passengers who would buy tickets of bullet trains.

Giving a comprehensive overview of the performance of his department to the members of the house, Rafique claimed that he was doing as much as possible to turn his department into a profit-making entity.

He said the biggest problem with railway lands across the country is that while being under the possession of Pakistan Railways they are owned by the provincial governments.

"The provinces are not prepared to turn over these lands to us, despite a Supreme Court order to do so," Rafique said.

He questioned as to how could railways commercially exploit the land that doesn't belong to them.

He , however, made it clear that the land occupied by traditional dwellers or slum residents would not be touched.

"How can we displace those people; where will they go?" he said.

Rafique said that a strict action would be taken against those who use using railway land for commercial purposes. (ANI)

Kabul [Afghanistan], Apr 23 (ANI): German officials have voiced concern over the possibility of thousands of former Taliban fighters having entered the country over the past two years among an influx of more than a million migrants and refugees.

Full Story >>

U.S. citizen detained in North Korea

Updated: Apr 23, 2017 14:20 IST

Seoul [South Korea], Apr 23 (ANI): A former Korean-American professor was arrested in North Korea last week, becoming the third U.S. citizen to be detained by Pyongyang of late.

Full Story >>

Kabul [Afghanistan], Apr 23 (ANI): As officials fear that the death toll of Friday's Taliban attack at the Afghan security forces in Balkh Province may increase, Ibrahim Khairandish, a member of the provincial council of the province, describing the horror stated that there was even a "shortage of coffins".

Full Story >>

France votes in presidential election

Updated: Apr 23, 2017 12:28 IST

Paris [France], Apr 23 (ANI): Voting is presently underway in France for the first phase of the presidential election that comes amidst heightened security concerns for the country following a string of deadly terror attacks.

Full Story >>

Kathmandu [Nepal], Apr 23 (ANI): The ruling alliance and the United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) have agreed to go for the local polls in two phases and fast track passage of the Constitution Amendment Bill.

Full Story >>

Concerns grow as Chinese jihadis rise in Syria

Updated: Apr 23, 2017 10:22 IST

Beijing [China], Apr 23 (ANI): Analysts have warned of the increasing security threat to Beijing as Chinese jihadis are on the rise in Syria, thereby forcing the country to rethink its Middle East strategy.

Full Story >>

Beijing [China], Apr 23 (ANI): Refuting the reports of Beijing putting its air force bombers on "high alert" after tensions in the Korean Peninsula, the Ministry of National Defense said that the Chinese forces are keeping their standard operational

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Apr 23 (ANI): Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has said he would go after Pakistan People's Party (PPP) co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari as his struggle to pursue the alleged corruption charges against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had reached a conclusion.

Full Story >>

Paris [France], Apr 23 (ANI): The Presidential elections in continental France is slated for Sunday, while the run-off is expected to take place on May 7.

Full Story >>

Canberra [Australia], Apr 23 (ANI): North Korea has warned Australia of a possible nuclear strike if Canberra persists in "blindly and zealously toeing the U.S. line."

Full Story >>

New York [U.S.A.], Apr 23 (ANI): Former United States president Barack Obama will deliver the first public remarks of his post-presidency, three months after leaving the White House.

Full Story >>

Kabul [Afghanistan], Apr 23 (ANI): The local and international media were still waiting for the National Unity Government (NUG) and the Ministry of Defence to release details on the exact casualty toll of Friday afternoon's deadly attack on the Afghan National Army's 209 Shaheen Corps Headquarters in Balkh province even more than 24 hours after the incident.

Full Story >>

Venezuela: Protests leave 13 dead in one day

Updated: Apr 23, 2017 03:51 IST

New York [U.S.A.], Apr 23 (ANI): In the wake of reports that as many 13 people were killed in one day in Venezuela's Caracas, people have planned to take to the streets dressed in white to pay tribute to those killed in the anti-government demonstrations this month.

Full Story >>

Terrorists launch mortar attack in Damascus

Updated: Apr 23, 2017 01:59 IST

Moscow [Russia], Apr 23 (ANI): At least two persons were left injured when terrorists shelled with mortars the Rukneddein residential area in the Syrian capital of Damascus, local media reported on Saturday.

Full Story >>

New York [U.S.], Apr. 22 (ANI): U.S. President Donald Trump has said that he will announce the much awaited tax reform and tax reduction on the coming Wednesday.

Full Story >>

Berlin [Germany], Apr 22 (ANI): Members of the Baloch National Movement (BNM) in Germany held anti-Pakistan protests over the ongoing Baloch Genocide in Pakistan.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Apr 22 (ANI): After Muslim guards at Amazon were refused with a space to pray five times in a day, the outraged community is planning a demonstration at the company's headquarters in Seattle on May 1st.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Apr 22 (ANI): The Lahore High Court Bar Association (LHCBA) on Saturday gave an ultimatum to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to resign within a week, or face a lawyers' movement bigger than the one that followed ex-chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry's ouster in 2007.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Apr 22 (ANI): Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden's mentor and successor Ayman al-Zawahiri as well as the slain terrorist's eleventh son Hamza is being protected by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and their most likely location of hiding is in Karachi.

Full Story >>

Shymkent [Kazakhstan], April 22 (ANI): The fourth meeting of the Kazakh-Indian Joint Working Group (JWG) for cooperation in the field of textiles was held on April 20 and April 21 in the southern Kazakhstan city of Shymkent.

Full Story >>