Salman Rashid

Travel writer, Fellow of Royal Geographical Society

The railway lines in Pakistan and the stories they tell

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A wintery morning. A small, all but abandoned, railway station. A few scrawny plants growing between its building and a double rail track glued on a cheerless slope with sombre, brooding hills closing in from all sides as if to prevent the station from escaping. That was Hirok station in the heart of Balochistan’s Bolan Pass — or at least that is my most abiding memory of it.

On a bench in front of the building lay what looked like a body shrouded in a grey shawl. To the grinding sound of our trolley’s brakes, it raised a bit of the shawl from its head to cast a bleary eye in our direction. Recognising the trolley men, it waved a languid hand and went back under the shawl. We passed on down the slope, once again gathering speed.
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My Books

Deosai: Land of the Gaint - New

The Apricot Road to Yarkand

Jhelum: City of the Vitasta

Sea Monsters and the Sun God: Travels in Pakistan

Salt Range and Potohar Plateau

Prisoner on a Bus: Travel Through Pakistan

Between Two Burrs on the Map: Travels in Northern Pakistan

Gujranwala: The Glory That Was

Riders on the Wind

Books at Sang-e-Meel

Books of Days