Indo-Pak bus service resumes
The Lahore-Delhi 'Dosti' bus service resumed service yesterday, a few days after it was suspended indefinitely on India's request due to the Jat quota agitation in Haryana. Pakistan Tourism Corporation Manager Colonel Khalid said, "We had been in touch with the Indian authorities who gave us the go-ahead on Tuesday." Upon restarting of the service, 21 passengers, mostly Indians, left for Delhi from Lahore.
The Delhi-Lahore 'Dosti' bus service, officially known as "Sada-e-Sarhad", runs between Delhi and Lahore via the border transit post at Wagah. It has been in service since February 1999, and was not halted even during the Kargil War.
At India's request, the Lahore-Delhi 'Dosti' bus service was suspended indefinitely. The Jat-quota unrest in Haryana, which left 19 dead, over 150 injured and paralysed road and rail traffic was the reason behind the cessation of the service. According to Pakistan Tourism Corporation Manager Colonel Khalid, India and Pakistan "mutually" agreed to suspend the service until the agitation came to an end.
The Samjhauta Express, commonly known as the Friend Express, is a bi-weekly train which runs between Delhi and Attari in India and Lahore in Pakistan. The train had its inaugural run in July 1976.
The Delhi-Lahore Samjhauta Express train service was also suspended in the wake of the Jat-quota agitation in Haryana. 72 passengers - 12 Indians and 60 Pakistanis - were sent back to their towns after the New Delhi-bound train was not allowed to leave Lahore railway station at India's behest. Pakistan extended the visas of the Indian citizens who had to stay back in Pakistan.
The Lahore-New Delhi Samjhauta Express train service which was earlier suspended, may resume its operations on 25 February 2016. A Pakistani Railways official stated, "Since the agitation is over in India, the train service will also resume tomorrow [Thursday]." However, the final decision on this issue will be taken by Indian authorities after they review the security situation in India.