India, Pakistan renew Samjhauta Express pact
Apr 9, 2007 - 7:54:03 PM

Islamabad, April 9 - Unfazed by bomb blasts on the Samjhauta Express in February, India and Pakistan Monday renewed for three years their agreement on running the cross-border train that has come to symbolise people-to-people contacts.

The agreement for running the train, launched over three decades ago to connect divided families across the border, was singed by Pakistan Railways general manager - Gulrez Hashmi and India's Railway Board advisor - S.R Thakur.

The Samjhauta Express runs between Wagah in Pakistan and Attari in India. A link train takes passengers from Wagah to Lahore and from Attari to Delhi.

Pakistan's Railway Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed and India's Deputy High Commissioner in Islamabad Manpreet Vohra were also present at the signing ceremony held at the ministry of railways here.

The agreement would remain effective till Jan 19, 2010.

Both sides also agreed to add two coaches each to the Samjhauta Express and Thar Express that connects Munabao in Rajasthan and Khokhrapar in Sindh.

The deadly bomb blasts that ripped through two coaches of the link train of the Samjhauta Express near Panipat in Haryana on the night of Feb 19 killed 68 people, mostly Pakistanis, and left several others injured.

India is conducting an inquiry into the train blasts that could be the handiwork of terrorists who wanted to derail its peace process with Pakistan and has agreed to share the findings of the probe with Islamabad.

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