Wednesday October 04, 2023

CM forced to eat his words

By our correspondents
July 24, 2016

KARACHI: Perhaps realising that cleaning up garbage from the entire Karachi in just three days is easier said than done, the chief minister, who had issued these orders, had to eat his words on Saturday and come up with the excuse that he had given the deadline only to push the city’s authorities to start working.

 “It’s not just difficult but impossible to clean a city like Karachi in just three days,” Qaim Ali Shah told reporters at the Karachi before leaving for Dubai.

“I had given a three-day deadline to the Karachi commissioner and the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation administrator to clean the city to activate and determine their ability and aspiration for carrying out the task,” he added.

“Now I am giving them more time to accomplish the goal.” Before arriving at the airport, the chief minister visited different areas of the city to inspect the state of cleanliness.

On July 18, while chairing a meeting at the Chief Minister’s House, Shah had given three days to the city’s commissioner and the administrator to clean the entire Karachi or face strict action.

After the meeting, Karachi commissioner Ejaz Ahmed Khan had told reporters that chief minister had not given the deadline to clean the entire city and had issued the orders for the South district only.

For the last two days, the chief minister was planning to tour the city to inspect the cleanliness work being carried out by the KMC and other municipal agencies in the city but could not do so because of his back-to-back engagements related to the other high-profile issues concerning the security situation and the special policing powers of Rangers in the province.

On Saturday, Shah managed to take time out to visit different areas the city just before flying to Dubai. After completing his hour-long visit, the chief minister went to the airport.

“I knew this task couldn’t be completed in three days. My real intention was to get the administration more activated and so far it has impressed me with its work,” he said.

 “This is just beginning of the work. Hopefully this task would be accomplished within two months.”

He said Karachi’s administration wanted to be given at least six months for cleaning the entire city but he had given them just two months.

“I will continue to visit different areas of the city to inspect the pace and standard of work.”

He said the officials concerned in Karachi faced an uphill task considering the sweeping and disposal of garbage heaps that needed to be carried out.  He added that storm-water drains in the city were being cleaned. “More time was required to take the trash and sewage extracted from these drains to the designated landfill sites.”

The locations where the chief minister inspected the cleanliness work included the Boat Basin Nullah (Nehar-e-Khayyam), Mai Kolachi, MA Jinnah Road, Old Sabzi Mandi, Hassan Square, Baitul Muqarram in Gulshan, Stadium Road, Manzoor Colony and Qayyumabad Nullah.

At the Boat Basin and Qayyumabad nullahs where de-silting was under way, he directed local government minister Jam Khan Shoro, who was accompanying him, to ensure that the garbage removed from the drains were shifted to landfill sites. “If left along the drains, the garbage would again fall down into them,” he added.  The chief minister told the local government minister that he would give cash prizes to the officers of the KMC and the district municipal corporations if they performed well.

Additional IG Karachi Mushtaq Maher, Karachi Commissioner Ejaz Ahmed Khan, KMC Administrator Laeeq Ahmed, the municipal commissioner and other officers also accompanied the chief minister during his visit.