Sources said the footfall on the Samjhauta Express, named after the Hindi word for "agreement", which generally records an occupancy of around 70%, has fallen drastically post the Pulwama attack by a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorist on February 14 in which 40 CRPF jawans were killed
New Delhi: Samjhauta Express services between Lahore and Delhi was restored by Pakistan on Monday after four days since it was suspended amid rising tension between Pakistan and India.
According to reports, the biweekly train carrying some 150 passengers left Lahore railway station for India. The train has six sleeper coaches and an AC 3-tier coach.
The Samjhauta Express took off from New Delhi as per schedule, but was halted at Attari after Pakistan suspended its services at its end on Wednesday.
Also read: Pakistan’s yet another nail in coffin: Samjhauta Express train suspended until further notice
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal earlier Wednesday said, "We have not received any instructions from authorities about any change in the running of the Samjhauta Express. We will follow all instructions given to us in this regard."
Originally, the train offered a through service with one rake going all the way between the terminals — Delhi in India to Lahore in Pakistan. However, now a Pakistani rake stops at Attari at which point passengers have to change trains and board an Indian rake.
Sources said the footfall on the Samjhauta Express, named after the Hindi word for "agreement", which generally records an occupancy of around 70%, has fallen drastically post the Pulwama attack by a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorist on February 14 in which 40 CRPF jawans were killed.
History of Samjhauta Express
Before this train, there used to be the Thar Express, travelling along a stretch of the Karachi–Peshawar Railway Line and Hyderabad–Khokhrapar Branch Line, which was discontinued for 41 years until the resumption of its services in 2006.
Samjhauta Express started its run as a daily train service on July 22, 1976, following the Shimla Agreement. The train plied between Amritsar and Lahore, a distance of about 52 km.
The schedule of the train was turned bi-weekly in 1994. Earlier, the rakes used to return to the home country on the day of the departure; the Pakistani rake stopped at Attari where passengers had to change trains. In 2000, the rake started staying back.
Between Lahore in Pakistan and Delhi in India, the train crosses Wagah in Pakistan and Attari in India. Nowadays, the train stops in Attari where all passengers alight for customs and immigration clearances.
There are no commercial stops between Delhi and Attari. While the name “Samjhauta Express” is popular, it is officially known as the Delhi-Attari or Attari-Delhi Express in the Indian territory.
What is Samjhauta Express runs from Attari to Lahore, although the passengers are checked at Wagah, the first station on the Pakistani side.
The train has four to eight coaches.
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Last Updated Mar 4, 2019, 1:48 PM IST