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Old November 22nd, 2017, 03:40 PM   #181
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LAHORE: The Punjab government seems to be committed about completing the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project at any cost, as it has resumed construction work near the St Andrew’s Church in violation of court orders, Pakistan Today has observed.

St Andrew’s Church is among the 11 historical buildings where Lahore High Court (LHC) in a verdict had ordered to stop construction work. The OLMT project has been controversial on many grounds as its construction has posed difficulty to a large number of dwellers and commuters.

The proposed site for the project was Ali Town to Dera Gujran along the GT Road to the Railway Station, across the city centre via Lakshmi Chowk, McLeod Road and Lake Road to Chauburji, before heading southwest along the Multan Road and Raiwind Road.

Soon after the project started in October 2015, a score of petitions were filed in the court while civil society and environmentalists also showed their serious concerns for this mega project.

On January 28, 2016, LHC rewarded a stay order on a petition of civil society which stated that the Punjab government was violating Antiquity Act 1975. The court in its verdict announced on August 19, ordered the government to stop construction work of the project within 200 feet of eleven historical buildings and ordered to form a review committee to assess the effects of the construction on historical buildings.

These buildings include: Chauburji, Saint Andrew’s Church, GPO building, Tomb of Zeb-un-Nisa, Supreme Court Registry Branch, Aiwan-e-Auqaf, Shalimar Gardens, Budhu ka Awa, Tomb of Baba Mauj Daria, Lakshmi Building, and Shah Chiragh Building. Later the Punjab government had challenged the LHC verdict in Supreme Court which had reserved the verdict and that yet has to be announced.

A survey carried out by Pakistan Today reveals that construction work is being carried out near St Andrew’s Church and Lakshmi Building.

A representative of civil society Maryam Hussain alleged that civil society will lodge a massive protest against this violation. She alleged that the Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif has ordered the authority to complete this project at any cost.

Moreover, she said that violations were occurring near Lakshmi Building where digging process has been started.

LDA spokesman Sohail Janjua told Pakistan Today that the recent construction was undergoing not for the OLMT project but for the sewerage drain. He said that drain will start from Haji Camp and will end at Babu Sabu.

Advocate Azhar Siddique while talking to Pakistan Today said that according to law, not a single brick can be moved within 200 feet of the historical buildings. He said that there was no reality behind the stance of LDA that the current construction was being done to construct drain. “The purpose behind this construction was to continue the construction work for OLMT project which is carried out in violation of court orders,” he said and added that this was not the first time when the government has violated court orders; he had brought the matter of violation into the knowledge of concerned authorities but they seem to be committed to violate the court orders, he said.

Source : https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/201...-court-orders/
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Old November 25th, 2017, 08:01 PM   #182
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LAHORE: The Lahore Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project will be rolled out in its entirety in just four months if the court gives a green light to construction in areas bound by stay orders.

This was stated by Punjab Chief Minister Adviser and the OLMT Steering Committee Chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hassaan in the project’s weekly progress review meeting held at the Punjab Chief Minister’s Secretariat on Wednesday.

Hassaan said the chief minister of Punjab is known for how quickly he delivers on projects and provincial development is a testament to the fact. “A detailed plan has been chalked out which outlines beautification and development along the metro track route,” he added. “Similarly, plants, footpaths, green belts, streetlights, road crossings and traffic signs have been marked and would be in place for the utility of the citizens of the city.”

The chairman said that in 50 educational institutions of the provincial capital, the City Traffic Police, in collaboration with Punjab Education Department and NESPAK would conduct sessions to create awareness among the youth on traffic and safety as part of the initiative.

Around 77.6% of development work on the metro train project has been completed, while in the case of Package-1 (Dera Gujjran to Chaburji), 87.3% progress had been made. For Package-2 (from Chaburji to Ali Town), 61% of ground civil works have been done, while for Package-3 (depot area) the progress stood at 82.2% and 80.4% for Package-4 (Stabling Yard),

He also highlighted that electrical and mechanical works of project 2 were marked by a progress level of 305. He directed the contractor to increase the pace of development work on Package-2 and said the restoration of roads under the elevated track from Chaburji to Multan Chungi should be completed by November 30.

He was of the opinion that road encroachments be removed at the earliest so that the pace of work is smooth. The model stations at Islam Park and Salamatpura must be completed by the same date so that electrical and mechanical works can be completed.

MPA Chaudhry Shahbaz, Lahore Deputy Mayor Nazeer Khan Swati, Lahore Development Authority Chief Engineer Israr Saeed, Punjab Mass Transit Authority General Manager Syed Aziz Shah, NESPAK General Manager Salman Hafeez, TEPA Chief Engineer Saifur Rahman and officials from PTCL, SNGPL, Pakistan Railways, Traffic Police and other concerned departments, officials from the Chinese contractor involved in the project, CR-NORINCO and China Engineering Consultants also attended the meeting.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 23rd, 2017.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1565829/1/
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Old November 29th, 2017, 05:59 PM   #183
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Old November 29th, 2017, 05:59 PM   #184
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Old December 2nd, 2017, 06:34 PM   #185
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Islampura Station Package 2

Updates 30/11/2017.

















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Old December 2nd, 2017, 06:36 PM   #186
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Mass transit: OLMT enters completion phase

Published: November 30, 2017

LAHORE:
Lahore Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project has entered its completion phase. All 26 train stations have been completed as per international standards, including facilities for citizens with special needs.

Speaking to participants of the project’s weekly progress review meeting on Wednesday, the OLMT Steering Committee Chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hassaan highlighted that all metro train stations will be accessible by the elderly and citizens with special needs as dedicated facilities were being built for wheelchairs.

Meeting participants were informed that over 86% civil and 67% electrical and mechanical works have been completed at Islam Park station which was being built as a model. He said that once this model station was completed, the same design and material would be replicated at all remaining stations. Development works were being executed on a rapid pace, except sites where the court had given stay orders, he added.

The meeting observed that the project had already been delayed owing to stay orders. The court judgment in metro train case was reserved by the court for seven months. Project contractors, including Chinese and locals, expressed their worries over the long delay.

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif, in a recent public address, expressed his concerns over reserving the verdict. He appealed to the court of law to announce its verdict on the fate of multi-billion rupee project and assured that his government would accept the decision, come what may.

Meeting participants were informed that the pace of development works had been increased on package-2 (from Chaburji to Ali Town). As many as 645 out of total 806 u-tub girders required for construction of elevated viaduct for train at this section have been precast, while 505 of such structures have so far been put into their places.

National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK) General Manager Salman Hafeez told the meeting participants that 77.8% of the civil works were completed, besides 30% electrical and mechanical work. Progress on package-I (from Dera Gujjaran, Grand Trunk Road to Chaburji) was 87.3%, on package-2 it was 62%, on package -3 (depot near Dera Gujjaran) was 82.3% and on package-4 (stabling yard near Ali Town) 81.4%.

The meeting was attended by MPA Chaudhry Shabaz Ahmad, LDA Chief Engineer Asrar Saeed Khan, Punjab Mass transit Authority Manager Operations Sayed Ozair Shah, Traffic Engineering and Transport Planning Agency (TEPA) Chief Engineer Saif-ur-Rehman and senior officials of LESCO, WASA, PTCL, Sui gas, traffic police, Pakistan Railways, Rescue 1122 and Civil Defence. Representatives of Chinese contracting companies, CR-NORINCO and local contractors were also present in the meeting.

The 27-kilometer Orange Line Metro Train Project is estimated to cost over $1.65 billion (Rs165 billion) and is funded through a soft loan by China’s Exim Banks. Project documents highlighted around $1 billion will be directly transferred to Chinese contractors, CR-NORINCO, for procurement of the rolling stock while the remaining amount will be transferred to Pakistan for construction of track and provision of allied infrastructure.

The project was part of the city metro network and when completed. It will connect Raiwind, Multan Road, Mcleod Road, Lahore Junction Railway Station and the Grand Trunk Road. It will be the first line of Lahore Metro, which would be country’s first mass rapid transit train system.


https://tribune.com.pk/story/1572026...pletion-phase/
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Old December 5th, 2017, 07:07 PM   #187
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Old December 8th, 2017, 11:39 AM   #188
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LAHORE: Chinese workers will run and supervise the Lahore Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) operations for the first five years besides local staff training in subsequent years.

Punjab Chief Minister’s Advisor and OLMT Steering Committee Chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hassaan disclosed this in the project’s weekly review meeting held on Wednesday. Hassaan highlighted that the rolling stock of all 27 trains for the OLMT project had been manufactured in China and were being shipped to Pakistan keeping in view the availability of space for parking.

Three train sets had already reached Lahore and the other three had been unloaded in Karachi, he said. Moreover, four train sets were in transit while another four were being loaded on ship from Shanghai, he added. Once this metro train will be operational, over 250,000 citizens will get benefit from the service daily.

Hassaan directed the local contractors to expedite finishing work at Islam Park and Salamat Pura metro stations, which were being set up as model stations for replication at other places as Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif wanted to inspect design and quality of the work.

Hassaan disclosed that a high-level Communist Party of China (CPC) delegation was visiting the provincial metropolis on December 9. The guest delegation would also visit the construction sites of the metro train to inspect development works, he said.

He also directed for implementing fire prevention inspection for site and dormitory for construction personnel. He emphasised for forcing ban on illegal night warming by open fire and high-power electrical heating for avoiding untoward incidents in the winter season.

National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK) General Manager Salman Hafeez told the meeting participants that in total 78.2 percent of civil work had been completed besides 32 percent electrical and mechanical work. He highlighted that on package-1 (from Dera Gujjaran to Chouburji) 87.4 percent development work had been completed. On package-2 (from Chouburji to Ali Town) 63 percent progress had been made, on package-3 (train depot near Dera Gujjaran) 82.4 percent and on package-4 (stabling yard near Ali Town) 82 percent work had been completed.

Hafeez said that the project had now entered into its completion phase and all 26 metro train stations were being completed as per international standards. Over 86 percent civil and 67 percent electrical and mechanical works were done at Islam Park Station which was being developed as model station for being used as a sample for completing the remaining stations.

MPA Chaudhry Shabaz Ahmad, Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Chief Engineer Asrar Saeed Khan, Punjab Mass transit Authority (PMA) Manager Operations Sayed Ozair Shah, Traffic Engineering and Transport Planning Agency (TEPA) Chief Engineer Saif-ur-Rehman and senior officials of LESCO, WASA, PTCL, Sui Gas, traffic police, Pakistan Railways, Rescue 1122, Civil Defence were present in the meeting.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 7th, 2017.
https://tribune.com.pk/story/1577800...st-five-years/
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Old December 8th, 2017, 11:40 AM   #189
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https://www.geo.tv/latest/171265-sup...tro-case-today

Supreme Court dismisses LHC order, clears tracks for Orange Line Metro Train

LAHORE: The Supreme Court of Pakistan dismissed on Friday the decision of the Lahore High Court (LHC) halting work on selected sites of the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project.

The court accepted the appeal of the Punjab government and others against the LHC decision with conditions and ruled by a 4-1 judgment that it observed no illegalities in the multi-billion rupee project.

A five-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, had reserved its verdict in the case on April 17 this year.

The bench included Justices Sheikh Azmat Saeed, Maqbool Baqar, Ijaul Ahsan and Mazhar Alam Miankhel.

Justice Ahsan read out the verdict whereas Justice Baqar wrote a dissenting note.

Although the apex court has allowed the Punjab government to go ahead with the project at the same speed, the bench has set 31 conditions to ensure the project's transparency.

The apex court has also ordered the formation of a five-member technical committee, with overarching authority, for a year.

The committee will include experts from the archaeology department as well as a former Supreme Court justice. It will present its recommendations to the chief minister.

Welcoming the decision, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif said the "people [have] won [today] over the vested interests...All efforts & energies to be employed to complete this mega public welfare project as early as possible InshaAllah!.."
Legal course

The proceedings regarding the project had begun in the Supreme Court after the Punjab government and others had appealed the LHC verdict ordering partial halting of construction as it was damaging ancient heritage sites of the provincial capital.

The LHC in August 2016 had ordered the suspension of construction on the $1.6 billion OLMT within 200 feet of 11 historical sites in the city to save them from damage.

The historical monuments include the Shalimar Gardens, Gulabi Bagh Gateway, Chauburji, Zebunnisa’s Tomb, Lakshmi Building and the General Post Office. These heritage sites are protected under the Punjab Special Premises (Preservation) Ordinance, 1985 and Antiquity Act, 1975.

Launched in May 2014 by Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, in collaboration with a Chinese company, the project is set to be the country’s first metro line, but it got embroiled in a legal battle in LHC which ordered a stay on several sites as the development was trampling over heritage sites in Lahore.
CM Punjab unveils Orange Line Metro Train project

A single train within the 27-kilometre rail line has the capacity to carry 1,000 people, out of which 200 can be seated while 800 can commute while standing.

The project, which was included in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor earlier in the year, is expected to run on electricity and transport up to 250,000 passengers a day.

The capacity is set to be increased to 500,000 passengers by 2025.

The original deadline for the project was December 25, 2017.
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Old December 10th, 2017, 07:40 AM   #190
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Need for speed: Pakistan’s first metro train to roar to life in March


Chief Minister Punjab Shehbaz Sharif inspecting construction of OLMT project on Saturday, December 9

Pakistan’s first metro train service is slated to begin operations by March 23, 2018, in Lahore, after a go-ahead from the Supreme Court on Friday.

In April, a five-member bench of the Court reserved its ruling in a case regarding Lahore’s Orange Line Metro Train, the Punjab government’s most ambitious but divisive project.

Then, this week, eight months later, the verdict was announced. The judgment set aside a lower court’s order and allowed the provincial government to continue construction work at the earliest.

The $1.6 billion project stumbled into legal troubles after the Lahore High Court stayed its construction within 200 feet of 11 historical monuments in the city. A petition filed by civil rights activists argued that the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) had expressed serious concern about the rail tracks damaging the colonial and Mughal era monuments, which include the Shalimar Gardens, Gulabi Bagh Gateway, Chauburji, Zebunnisa’s Tomb, Lakshmi Building and the General Post Office. These heritage sites are also protected under the Punjab Special Premises (Preservation) Ordinance, 1985 and Antiquity Act, 1975.

In a press release, the Lahore Development Authority, a government department tasked with planning development in the city, stated that 78 percent of the construction was already done, even as the Court was reviewing the project. Six trains have reached Pakistan from China, and 20 others will be arriving soon.


“The Chinese contractors are speedily laying down the tracks,” it added.

“According to our evaluations, we hope to have the trains running by March. 23,” Amir Khan, the director land acquisition at the LDA, tells Geo.tv, “But this is still a tentative date. We aim to complete it in day-and-night shifts.”

There is little doubt that starting from now, work will power through, but the provincial government will also have to be mindful of the 31 conditions set by the Court in its ruling. Amongst which is the order to set up a Rs.100 million fund for the restoration of the historical monuments, ensure that all construction work is monitored by archaeologists and former judges, as well as make arrangements to reduce the speed of the high-speed rail when passing near the heritage sites. The judges also instructed the government to operate the metro train “on an experimental basis for at least two weeks on the entire length of the route” to monitor vibrations.

A few hours after the court’s ruling, in a video posted on the Punjab government’s Twitter account, Punjab’s Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif congratulated the people of Pakistan, adding that had there been no delay, the project could already have been benefiting “thousands of children, university students, labourer, doctors, nurses and dishwashers. There would have been fewer cars on the streets which would have helped control air pollution.” The very next day (Saturday), the chief minister began visiting various sites of the metro train from 7 a.m.

The OLMT project was launched in May 2014 by Sharif, in collaboration with a Chinese company. Construction for it began rapidly in 2015 and was personally supervised by Punjab’s chief minister.

The 27-kilometre metro train is expected to run on electricity and will transport up to 250,000 passengers a day. The capacity will be increased to 500,000 passengers by 2025.

https://www.geo.tv/latest/171472-nee...-life-in-march
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Old December 10th, 2017, 07:42 AM   #191
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Old December 10th, 2017, 07:44 AM   #192
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Old December 11th, 2017, 06:39 PM   #193
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Don’t risk damage to priceless assets: Justice Baqar



ISLAMABAD:
Supreme Court judge Justice Maqbool Baqar, who dissented to the majority judgment that allowed the Punjab government to carry on the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project, has expressed apprehension that the project will have an adverse impact on the monuments.

“Why should we allow irreversible damage to our priceless assets that we have in the shape of centuries-old heritage, like the elegant and splendid masterpiece from the times of brilliant Mughal civilisation, the Shalimar Gardens, which has been recognised as an ‘asset of outstanding universal value’, having ‘significance’, which ‘is so exceptional as to transcend national boundaries and to be of common importance for present and future generations of all humanity’, deserving permanent protection as a ‘heritage of highest importance to the international community as a whole’, and has thus been inscribed on the world heritage list, or the monumental gateway known as Chauburji… which is a beloved urban landmark, and a highly visible icon of Lahore,” says Justice Baqar in his 50-page dissenting note.

He also noted that Pakistan was under international obligations to preserve the heritage sites. He said that scrapping the OLMT project was in nobody’s interest. “All that is required is to ensure that no harm to the monuments is caused by the impact of the project,” he wrote.

Justice Baqar also noted, “Beyond their visual appeal, the monuments are reflective of our glorious past and carrying immense cultural, social, and historical significance. The monuments… admittedly bears signs of abuse and neglect and suffers from vagaries of weather. Some of these have already developed cracks, and unfortunately, neither the endurance of these monuments has been evaluated, nor the susceptibility of their foundations measured. These foundations have also not been taken into account while calculating the distance between the track and the monuments.”

The judge observed that in terms of Article 4 of The Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage adopted by the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), to which convention Pakistan was a signatory, “we are obliged to ensure the identification, protection, conservation, presentation and transmission to future generations of the cultural and natural heritage, and to do all that we can towards the said end to the utmost of our own resources and, where appropriate, with any international assistance and cooperation, in particular, financial, artistic, scientific and technical which we may be able to obtain”.

Justice Baqar also emphasised, “The purpose, object, intent, and spirit of the 1975 Act and the 1985 Ordinance are the preservation and protection of movable and immovable antiquities, and special premises.

“Both the laws contain elaborate arrangement and provisions for carrying out the aforesaid intent and purpose, including that of declaration and listing of particular properties as antiquities, for enforcing their protection, and of making arrangements for custody, preservation and protection of the antiquities.”

The judge noted that the country had also benefited from the technical assistance and financial help provided by UNESCO, in respect of Shalimar Garden and the Lahore Fort, which had been on the world heritage list since 1981 and, as per a UNESCO report, received financial assistance totalling $121,000, for maintenance and uplift.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1579827/1/
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Old December 11th, 2017, 06:41 PM   #194
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Orange Line Metro Train: Litigation to cost exchequer over Rs10 billion



LAHORE: Although the Supreme Court of Pakistan conditionally allowed the Punjab government to complete the Lahore Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project, the litigation already delayed the project by a year and is likely to escalate cost by more than Rs10 billion.

An executive of a contracting company told The Express Tribune that all construction works near heritage sites had been halted since January 28, 2016, when the court issued the first stay order. The court took almost 22 months to announce its verdict about the project’s fate. This not only delayed the scheme, but caused huge financial losses to the public exchequer.

He disclosed that In a recent progress review meeting of the project, a chief engineer indicated that the delay was costing the public exchequer around Rs20 million on a daily basis. “Neither local nor Chinese contractors have estimated the exact magnitude of loss, but they will submit their claims once the project is completed.”

He pointed out that the government generally negotiated such claims with local contractors to minimise its burden of loss, but in international contracting, it is difficult for the client to reduce such liabilities. According to an estimate, the delay already cost the public kitty over Rs10 billion, but an exact amount of loss will surface on completion of the project,” he underlined.

Responding to a question, he said it was impossible to complete the metro train project before the general elections in 2018. “The central station near Mall Road is the most critical infrastructure of the project for both Pakistani and Chinese contractors. It is a three-storey underground structure with tonnes of equipment and systems to control the entire metro train operations, but no work was initiated at the site yet due to the court’s stay order,” he said. He added that Chinese engineers also required a lot of time to complete electrical and mechanical works as they have hardly completed 30% of the target.

OLMT Package-1 (from Dera Gujjran to Chaburji) and Package-2 (from Chaburji to Ali Town) contractors said though it was a challenging task, they would try their level best to complete the project in the minimum time. Package-1 contractor Shahid Saleem said he needed more than two months to complete the elevated portion of the metro train track after which Chinese engineers would lay rails and complete electrical and mechanical works. “I believe metro train track will be ready from Dera Gujjran to Lakshmi Chowk by the end of March 2018. The most difficult and time-consuming section of the Package-1 is central station for which we have to close Mall Road for all types of traffic.”

Replying to a question, he said construction near heritage sites would start after installation of seismic sensors on historic sites as directed by the apex court. It will take a little time to initiate construction activity near the famous Shalimar Garden as utility companies have to shift underground wires and pipes from the site.

The OLMT Package-2 contractor, Chaudhry Waseem Afzal, said his company has targeted completing and handing over the elevated metro train track to Chinese engineers for installation of rails and other equipment by the end of February. He was of the view that the completion of metro train project is dependent on works that will be carried out by Chinese engineers.

OLMT Steering Committee Chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hassaan, on Saturday, chaired a special meeting to chalk out a comprehensive plan to complete the metro train project in minimum time, besides initiating the process to constitute three special committees for the project, as per directions of the Supreme Court.

He said a formal request has been made to the Chief Justice of Pakistan to nominate a retired judge of the superior judiciary as a member of the ‘supervisory and monitoring committee’ for the project. He reiterated that the directions by the apex court will be implemented in letter and spirit.

He said a high-level delegation of Chinese contractor CR-NORINCO will arrive Lahore on December 15 to negotiate “operation and maintenance contract’ for the project”. Hassaan added hurdles in the completion of this project have been removed as a result of the landmark judgment of the SCP. “Now a challenging task is to complete the project is the shortest interval.” He urged all relevant departments and agencies to intensify efforts and work day and night for the early completion of this project.

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1580365...-rs10-billion/
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Old December 15th, 2017, 05:02 PM   #195
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Effects of OLMT: Rs21b needed to pay relocation compensation



LAHORE:
After getting a go ahead from the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP), city developers have expedited development work on the Lahore Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) project. They have also raised a demand of over Rs21 billion to clear civil structure and outstanding land acquisition payments.

Although the government has already paid relocation compensation for the land acquired, there are still a couple of families left. A member of the OLMT steering Committee indicated there was a dispute among a few claimant families so their payments were on hold. Now, as the project has got the green signal from the apex court and work is starting at all remaining sites, the government is trying to clear all remaining land acquisition payments.

City developers have forwarded a summary for provision of resources to the Punjab Planning and Development Department. They have demanded Rs8.2 billion for OLMT package-1 (from Dera Gujran to Chaburji), Rs9.3 billion for package-2 (from Chaburji to Ali Town), Rs 1.3 billion for package-3 (depot) and Rs2.8 billion for package-4 (stabling yard).

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1584156...-compensation/
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Old December 17th, 2017, 06:47 AM   #196
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Updated Pictures of Lahore Orange line Metro Train Package -1, Islam-park Station View.





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Old December 17th, 2017, 02:59 PM   #197
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I like the way it's taking shape!! Looking good!!
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Old December 18th, 2017, 12:47 PM   #198
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Orange Line Train Lahore
Updated Pictures of Dera Gujjran Station, Islam Park And SalamatPura Stations








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Old December 18th, 2017, 12:48 PM   #199
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Old December 18th, 2017, 12:48 PM   #200
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