Punjab cabinet has decided against bearing a multi-billion rupee subsidy every year on the Orange Line Metro Train. The matter was discussed in detail when the cabinet met on Tuesday with Chief Minister Usman Buzdar in the chair.
It was, however, decided that sparing Rs. 10 billion a year for such a ‘white elephant’ project will be injustice with the poor masses of the province. The matter was then referred back to Punjab Assembly for further deliberation.
CM Buzdar announced the news on his Twitter handle.
Even if the ticket price is kept at Rs. 60 per trip, the government will have to pay a subsidy of Rs. 10 billion each year to bear the operational and management cost of the Orange Line Project.
اورنج لائن ٹرین کا قرض واپس کرنے کےلیے اربوں روپےسالانہ دینےپڑیں گے، اور اگر 60روپےکا ٹکٹ بھی رکھیں تو صرف ٹرین کو چلانے(O&M) کےلیے 10 ارب سالانہ سبسڈی دینی پڑےگی
کیا ہم اس رقم سےہسپتال و سکول چلائیں یا یہ سبسڈی دیں؟ کابینہ نےفیصلہ اسمبلی بھیجا ہےتاکہ عوامی نمائندوں کافیصلہ آئے
— Usman Buzdar (@UsmanAKBuzdar) February 18, 2020
Loan repayment detailed are not included, he mentioned.
“Do we run government schools and hospitals with the money or a 27-kilometer metro train?” he maintained, adding that the matter has been sent to the public representatives for a decision.
Earlier in a TV show, former spokesperson for CM Buzdar, Shahbaz Gill, revealed that the government will have to fix the ticket fare at Rs. 285 per head to run Orange Train without any loss. Even in this case, Rs. 6.5 billion alone will go in the interest payment on the debt obtained for the project.
— IK Today (@IKTodayPk) February 18, 2020