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July 30, 2020

PPP ministers blame PTI lawmakers for post-rain mess in Karachi

Karachi

July 30, 2020

Instead of giving any relief to the people of the city, the Karachi-based lawmakers of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) created more civic problems in the city during the current monsoon season.

Sindh Education and Labour Minister Saeed Ghani made the allegation to this effect while speaking at a press conference on Wednesday along Sindh Information and Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah.

Ghani said Prime Minister Imran Khan during his two-year period in the office of the country’s chief executive had formed four committees for Karachi but they had so far done nothing for the city.

He said no funds had been given to these committees, adding that all that had happened due to the federal government so far was that the PTI MNAs from Karachi were given the task to consume development funds disbursed to them within one month.

Ghani alleged that the PTI MNAs had dug up several roads and streets of the city in the name of laying water and sewerages lines, that too, without informing the relevant authorities. “This work has been done during the monsoon season as this is not the suitable time for carrying out the development works,” he said.

Without naming Federal Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Zaidi who had earlier initiated a sanitation campaign in Karachi, Ghani said a federal minister had earlier claimed that he would lift hundreds of thousands tons of garbage from the city but later on he was able to transport only some of the waste to the landfill sites and the rest of the garbage taken out from the drains was left unattended on roads and streets of the city.

Shah said that work for the de-silting of storm water drains in Karachi had started with the assistance of World Bank on July 3, 2020. He added that the de-silting task on 78 identified choking points in 38 major storm water drains of the city had been completed.

He explained that the Sindh chief minister had released special funds for de-silting of small storm water drains under the control of different district municipal corporations in the city. According to Nasir, the media had been portraying an erroneous impression that Karachi had drowned in the aftermath of the recent monsoon rain as in reality no such thing had occurred.

He claimed that the situation this year during the monsoon had been relatively better compared to the past. He said that except a few low-lying areas in the city, the operation to drain out accumulated rainwater had been completed in the city within two-and-a-half hours. The local government minister, however, apologised to the concerned residents of those low-lying areas of the city who had to face trouble due to the accumulation of rainwater.

“During the past when so much heavy rains occurred in the city, the accumulation of rainwater on roads of Karachi persisted for several days coupled with suspension of flight and railway operations,” he maintained. “But no such thing has happened this time as rainwater was drained out from important highways and majority of the areas within two to two-and-a-half hours.”

He explained that de-watering machinery had been deployed to drain out water from the affected areas like Orangi Town, Liquatabad, Federal B Area, PECHS and other low-lying localities of the city. He said big rocks had been retrieved from sewerage lines in the Soldier Bazaar area and such incidents had also occurred in the past too to choke the drainage and sewerage systems of the city.

He said FIRs would be lodged against miscreants behind such incidents who wanted to destroy the sewerage and drainage systems of Karachi. He added that urban flooding had occurred in areas of the KDA Chowrangi, Nagan Chowrangi, North Nazimabad and other adjacent areas due to the infrastructure built for the Green Line Bus Rapid Transit project and preventive steps were being taken so that no such incidents took place in future.