LAHORE                 -            Pakistan Railways will restore its train operations with protective measures for passengers after lifting of the lockdown in the country.

In a meeting, presided over by Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad on Friday, it was decided that booking for trains would only be carried out through online or e-ticketing service of the railways and the process would be closed 24 hours before the train departure.

The railways administration was considering to operate 24 Up and Down special trains of long distance routes to facilitate passengers; however, the number of trains would be finalised later.

The PR will install sanitizer walk-through gates at 40 different railway stations whereas the number of gates will be increased gradually. These gates will be manufactured at the railways factories.

It was decided that families would not be allowed to come to the railway stations to see off the travellers.

Entrance of non-relevant persons in the limits of 200 metres of the railway stations will be prohibited and booking in the trains would be blocked on 60 percent of occupancy to ensure social distancing policy for every passenger.

The PR will take strict legal action against the passenger who would attempt to travel by any freight train. The passengers would be allowed to get to the platforms one hour before the departure of the train in case the federal government allowed restoration of the train operations.

The Railways also advised passengers to keep sanitizer, soap, mask and gloves with them and it would be ensured that all passengers are sanitized before they enter or leaving the railway stations.

The passengers have been requested to travel only in emergency with limited numbers and keep distance with others at the platforms.

The divisional superintendents have been directed in the meeting to ensure provision of quality products at the stalls situated at the railway stations and deploy medical officers where the trains would be stopped.