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Thar Express from Pak arrives in India
February 18, 2006 16:57 IST
Marking the resumption of the second Indo-Pak rail link and re-uniting divided families on either side of the border, the Thar Express from Khokhrapar in Pakistan arrived in Munabao, Rajasthan on Saturday.
The historic train, carrying over 300 passengers, pulled into the Munabao station at around 1350 hours to welcome songs played by a live band.
The train, painted in green and yellow, chugged into the station amid cheers from hundreds of people eagerly waiting for it at the platform.
Local people of the sleepy border town had positioned themselves atop sand dunes near the station under the scorching sun to witness the historic moment and clapped as the train arrived at the station.
Railways Minister Lalu Prasad was present to receive the Pakistani train, which was also to ferry around 300 passengers from India to Khokrapar.
Tight security arrangements have been made with Border Security Force personnel putting up pickets along the tracks and a fence erected from the station to the Zero Line.
The station was recently renovated to ready it for the resumption of the trans-border rail service.
The weekly train, connecting Khokrapar in Pakistan's Sindh province with Munabao in Rajasthan and named after the Thar desert, had left Karachi around midnight.
It is the second rail link between the two countries, the first being the Samjhauta Express, which runs between Amritsar and Lahore.This train link was suspended after the 1965 Indo-Pak war.