Pakistan suspends Delhi-Lahore bus service

Pakistan has suspended the Lahore-Delhi friendship bus service, after suspending two cross-border trains, in the wake of India's decision revoking Jammu and Kashmir's special status and bifurcating the state into two Union Territories, a senior Pakistani minister has said.

The bus service was first started in February 1999 but was suspended after the 2001 Parliament attack. It was restarted in July 2003.

The move is in line with the decisions taken during a meeting of the National Security Committee (NSC) held on Wednesday, Pakistan Minister for Communications and Postal Services Murad Saeed said.

"In line with the decisions of NSC Pak-India bus service is suspended," Saeed tweeted on Friday.

The Lahore-Delhi bus service is operated from Ambedkar Stadium terminal near Delhi Gate. DTC buses ply every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) buses every Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday, from Delhi to Lahore.

For the return trip, DTC buses leave Lahore every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday whereas the PTDC buses are available every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Earlier, Pakistan Minister of Railways Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad had announced on Friday that it will suspend the Thar Express train service with India which links the two countries across the Rajasthan border, a day after it stopped the Samjhauta Express following its decision to downgrade bilateral ties.

Rasheed announced to suspend the services of Thar Express and said that the last train would leave for India late Friday night, the official APP news agency reported.

The Thar Express has been running between Jodhpur's Bhagat ki Kothi station to Karachi every Friday night since services resumed on February 18, 2006 after a 41-year suspension.