Karachi: According to news reports, the federal government approved the removal of 22 level crossings from the loop section of the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) on Friday (September 25) to make train travel easier.

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The Planning Commission’s report was accepted by the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC), which was chaired by Minister of Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin. The project is expected to cost PKR 20.71 billion to complete and will improve railway operation without increasing traffic congestion.

Instead, the railway ministry proposes building overhead bridges and underpasses along the KCR track. Where ECNEC has agreed to accept a project with the purpose of cost reduction, the Central Development Working Party (CDWP) will be authorised to review it.

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Such projects will be approved by the CDWP if the rationalisation effort results in a cost reduction, and a progress report will be presented for the ECNEC chairman’s review. The proposal will be resubmitted to ECNEC for examination and approval if the cost rationalisation or amendment increases.

Minister of Planning and Development Asad Umar, the Planning Commission deputy chairman, secretaries, provincial government officials, and other top executives were in attendance at the meeting.

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