A new railway line between Karbala and Musayyib [Musayyab] was opened this week by the Transport Ministry, reports AKnews.
The new line was opened in Babil and Karbala Provinces just to the south of Baghdad, to transport Shiite pilgrims marking the 40th day after Hussein Ibn Ali was martyred. Around 8,000 people are expected to be traveling from Musayyib to Karbala for the ceremonies.
The federal government had allocated 5 billion IQD ($4.2 million USD) to provide services, including transport, to visitors.
The chairman of Karbala Provincial Council, Mohammed Hamid al-Moussawi, told AKnews the Ministry wants to reduce road traffic when pilgrims return to their homes after the ceremonies.
"The most significant problem for Karbala is transferring the visitors to their provinces at the end of the visit, although new railway lines have been opened and several Iraqi ministries including Trade, Transport and Defense participate in the transport process."
"The government in Karbala began building a modern road network last year to link the Province with its neighbours. The Ya Houssein road cost 50 billion IQD ($42.8 million USD) and was paid for by the Iraqi Council of Representatives. It will reduce traffic on the main roads that connect Karbala to Baghdad, Babil and Najaf Provinces, and it is scheduled to be completed this year."
[Picture: Musayyab – Karbala railway]