OKARA-The death of an MA English female student has rejuvenated the 10-year-old demand for the railway level crossing (RLC) to facilitate the thousands of the varsity students.
Nabeeha Mukhtar of village 14/1.A.L had attended the MA English class at UoO situated some 12 km away in the east of the city at GT Road, and was run over by a Karachi-bound train when she was crossing the track at the north of the University of the Okara (UoO).
The demand was not met by the government, Pakistan Railways in spite of Railway Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq commitment in an open public gathering in April, 2016 at Okara when the minister arrived here to lay the foundation stone of the model city railway station on the demand of MNA Riazul Haq.
In 2006, then federal minister for higher education Dr Attaur Rehman laid the foundation stone of the campus of University of Education Lahore, presently UoO, and then RLC was demanded by the university authorities which was sanctioned by the Railway administration on the letter issued by then prime minister Yusuf Raza Gilani. It was latter withdrawn on the demand of railway authorities on the pretext of an agreement with the World Bank then providing funds for the doubling of the railway track.
Since then, the demand was repeated by the university authorities but to no avail. In mid 2015, the students of the university to press the demand of RLC blocked GT Road. After that the National Highway Authorities (NHA), National Highway and Motorway Police (NH&MP) along with the administration of Renala Tehsil rushed and got clear the road pledging to set up a bus stop for the student in first phase but it was never reconsidered.
The latest was the federal railway minister's announcement that also met with the negligence. The students of University of the Okara for the last two years were suffering a lot as the university had no right approach to enter it with more than 3,000 enrolled.
Moreover, funds were allocated to construct a road from RLC Kot Bari to UoO at the north of the railway track but it was not materialised. The students demanded solution to their problems.