In an urgent phone call on Monday, President Mamnoon Hussain reassured his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that the $62 billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) won’t pass through Faizabad Interchange. President Mamnoon called Xi after the protests at Faizabad Interchange were wrapped up, well-placed sources have told The Dependent.
“The China Pakistan Economic Corridor won’t go through Faizabad Interchange, D-Chowk or the Red Zone in Islamabad,” Mamnoon told Xi.
“It won’t pass through Charing Cross in Lahore either, rest assured” the Pakistani President said with characteristic poise and conviction. According to sources, the Interior Ministry has asked the Pakistan Cricket Board to connect them with the Lahore Traffic Police.
“We want to know how they managed to divert traffic when they hosted the Pakistan Super League final, the Independence Cup and the final T20 against Sri Lanka,” a source within the ministry said.
“What we plan to do is divert all things CPEC accordingly, so that it does not pass through volatile regions in the country that are present in the capital and the provincial capital of the largest province of the country.”
Analysts, meanwhile, fear that not only would this rerouting of CPEC cause another route controversy, it might result in traffic jams on Lahore’s Mall Road and Canal Road.