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September 23, 2019

Murad lashes out at ‘friends of Karachi’ for choking manholes with heavy stones


September 23, 2019

Sindh’s chief minister on Sunday said the second day of his month-long campaign to clean the metropolitan city began with the removal of heavy stones from a 24-diameter sewer line in the Malir 15 neighbourhood that was choked by “the so-called owners and friends of Karachi” to cause the drive to fail.

CM Syed Murad Ali Shah said an MNA had held a sit-in at the Malir 15 site, adding that he (the chief executive) had received some reports of heavy stones choking the manhole so that the entire Malir and Quaidabad areas, including the main Sharea Faisal, could be turned into a pool of sewage.

“These are the friends of Karachi and the owners of this city,” he taunted. “These people are the enemies of Karachi and the Karachiites, as they [the so-called owners] are playing with them [the people].”

Shah was talking to the media during his visit to different parts of the city with his cabinet members Saeed Ghani, Syed Nasir Shah and Murtaza Wahab, Karachi Commissioner Iftikhar Shallwani, Local Government Secretary Roshan Shaikh, Karachi Water & Sewerage Board Managing Director Asadullah Khan and others.

The CM took the media persons to the Malir Halt area opposite the Soneri Masjid and showed them a large number of heavy stones that had been stuffed in a manhole of to choke it completely.

“The entire area had been inundated by gutter water. The water board kept dewatering the area but the sewage had no way out to flow in its normal direction,” he said. Shah said the water board had finally found out that the sewer was choked by “the so-called owners and friends of Karachi” to cause his campaign to fail.

Addressing his opponents through the media, he said his intentions were quite clear: “I am serving the people of this city with my heart and soul, so your conspiracies won’t work.” He directed the police officials present on the occasion to start arresting such enemies of the city and keep him posted about them with their photos, affiliations and other details, which he would tweet to expose them before the entire country.

Drive statistics

Briefing the CM, Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Shah said that apart from tractors and trolleys, 212 dumper trucks were used in the clean-up campaign on the first day of the drive, adding that 1,263 workers also participated in the exercise.

He said that these dumper trucks made some 848 trips and transported 7,152 tonnes of garbage to the temporary garbage transfer stations set up in the city.

The chief executive said that if the current pace of lifting garbage — 7,152 tonnes a day — were to be maintained for 30 days, then the progress of garbage lifting would reach 214,560 tonnes after a month.

“This is a good pace. I appreciate the local administration, the district municipal corporations [DMCs] and officers of other civic agencies for their untiring work. I am sure this would change the look of the city.”

Visits across city

The CM started his visit on Sunday from Lyari, where he stopped in different localities to meet with the people busy with their shopping. The people requested the chief executive to expedite the ongoing development works in the area. He also inspected the laying of gutter lines and road construction in Nayaabad.

When he was going to the Lakri Gondal area to see the temporary garbage transfer station, he stopped by the DIG CIA office. He called a policeman and left a message for the DIG to get his area cleaned.

“I am surprised you do not bother to clear the area leading to your office,” he said, ordering him to remove the old vehicles from the area and keep it completely clean. The CM then moved to Machhar Colony. On the way, there was a plot of the Karachi Port Trust (KPT) where heaps of garbage had been lying due to negligence of the relevant authorities.

He directed the city commissioner to take its photo, remove the garbage, take another photo and then send them to the KPT authorities with a letter telling them that their work was being done by the Sindh government and asking them to maintain their cleaned areas.

In Mauripur, the chief executive noticed that trash was spread everywhere along the road. He directed the LG minister to activate the area DMC and ask them to clean the area. He directed the West DMC to plant trees along the road.

When the CM drove through the Hawkesbay road, he saw old motor vehicles, with their abandoned frames lying along the road. He expressed displeasure and directed the West senior superintendent of police and the West deputy commissioner to remove these vehicles and report to him.

He also directed the local administration to remove all encroachments plaguing the Truck Stand area as well as other localities and then report to him.

The chief executive visited the landfill site near Musharraf Colony Morr and the LG staff deputed there informed him that they had received 14 dumper trucks on Saturday evening. He directed them to keep record of each and every vehicle, its trips and the weight of the garbage it was dumping there.

After completing the visit of District West, the CM went to Malir, where he showed the choked gutter to the media in Malir 15 and then headed to Bhains Colony.

On the way, he stopped at the Quaidabad Bridge, from where garbage was being lifted. He directed the Malir DC to clean the area under the bridge and make sure not to allow any encroachments there. He also asked him to manage the bus stop located a little way from the bridge.

The CM then went to Bhains Colony, and at the railway crossing near the Machine Tool Factory, he was received by workers of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in large numbers. The District Malir PPP workers held party flags and shouted slogans in favour of party chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the CM, Murtaza Baloch and other party workers.

The chief executive inspected the garbage lifting work at Bhains Colony and met with the people of the area. The locals requested him to get the Mehran Highway constructed. CM Shah said Malir needed more development than other districts of the city. “I am on it and would launch special development works in the area.”