The Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, which serves around 300,000 daily commuters in the provincial capital, is on the verge of closure due to a critical shortage of funds. In a letter addressed to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa caretaker government, the BRT authorities have urgently demanded the payment of outstanding dues amounting to Rs450 million for the last three months in order to sustain the essential transportation service.
The letter, penned by the North-South Travels (Pvt) Limited and East-West Transport (Pvt) Limited, draws attention to the severe consequences of non-payment. If the dues remain unpaid, more than 300,000 people will be left without reliable transportation, greatly impacting their livelihoods and daily activities.
According to the letter, the government is contractually obligated to release payment against monthly invoices within the specified timeframe. The accumulation of a staggering Rs450 million in unpaid dues has placed a heavy financial burden on the BRT system, jeopardizing its ability to continue operations. The letter further warns that if the situation persists, the operation of buses may come to a halt, resulting in a major transportation crisis for the city.
It is worth noting that last year, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) initiated an investigation into alleged corruption in the Peshawar BRT project. This ongoing probe adds an additional layer of complexity to the already dire financial situation faced by the BRT authorities.
As commuters anxiously await a resolution to the funding crisis, the future of the Peshawar BRT hangs in the balance. Efforts are being made to urgently address the payment issue and secure the necessary funds to ensure the uninterrupted operation of this vital transportation system, upon which hundreds of thousands of people depend on a daily basis.