KCR travellers' wait for train's whistle may not end soon.

KARACHI -- The highly ambitious plan to restart the 44km Karachi Circular Railway remains a pipe dream as the construction work on the KCR route has come to a halt causing a great deal of hardships to residents.

Informed sources told Dawn that the Frontier Works Organisation, which was awarded contract of three underpasses, a flyover and an elevated 6.4km-long structure along with the laying of new railway tracks, had stopped the work after the federal government decided to execute the project under CPEC.

Initiated in 1964, the old KCR route started from Drigh Road and ended in downtown Karachi. After suffering losses for years, its operation was ceased in 1999.

The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government had decided to revive the KCR on a BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) basis approved by Private Partnership Authority with heavy subsidies to the private partner by the government.

Construction work stops after federal govt decides to execute project under CPEC

However, the change in regime led to change in financial theme of the project as the incumbent Pakistan Democratic Alliance-led government abandoned the public-private partnership (PPP) mode and decided to seek Chinese investment for the project under CPEC.

The sources said the KCR project was bound to be delayed for an indefinite period as it would have to be revised after the Chinese authorities examined the PC-1 of the project.

They said that although the federal government had decided to execute the project under CPEC, no proper formal handing and taking over of the project was so far done.

The sources said that the FWO, which had already completed construction work on the two underpasses in Block 13-D of the...

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