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August 8, 2020

Sindh government fails: Cities and towns across Sindh inundated as municipal systems collapse

National

August 8, 2020

SUKKUR: At least one person was killed when he was struck by lightning as rain pounded Sukkur, Khairpur, Hyderabad, Jamshoro, Nawabshah, Kashmore, Shikarpur on Friday, turning them into giant cesspools. Despite the CM’s directives, ministers, advisers and MPs could not ensure their presence in hometowns to supervise rain contingencies.

Friday witnessed another round of failure of the municipal corporations, the public health engineering department and town committees to remove the rain water from the streets, complicating miseries for the public when roads and the low-lying areas were swamped. Water entered the houses in several localities. The flooded roads also posed problems for the movement of cars and motorcycles, stranding the commuters for unduly long time period as water pumps and other equipment failed to perform.

The stranded people complained that the municipal corporations and its related departments are never prepared for the rains contingency. The storm water drains and the sewerage system remains choked and are never cleared ahead of the rain season and as a result they have to face hardships, they said. Like always, electricity across Sukkur remained suspended for unduly long period of the night and Friday morning as almost 76 feeders of SEPCO tripped. Despite the Sindh Chief Minister’s announcement that his cabinet ministers, advisers and MPs will supervise management of the rain emergency in their home districts and towns, none could be seen in Sukkur, Khairpur and other cities.

In a related development, one person identified as Sikandar Maitlo died in village Wadda Mahesar near Gambat when he was hit by bolt of lightning. The rains also damaged the date crop across the date hub of Khairpur. The growers reported large scale damage to their crop estimated to be in millions of rupees.

Meanwhile, the Sindh Minister for Irrigation, Sohail Anwar Sial, while presiding over a meeting at the office of deputy commissioner Larkana, directed the officials to ensure early drainage of water stranded in the low-lying areas, availability of essential medicines and prevent power outages. Deputy Commissioner Qamar Shahdadkot Javed Ali Jagirani briefed the minister about the rain emergency plan.

Talking to the media, Siyal said situation in Larkana in the aftermath of rains is well under control but conceded that they are facing some problems due to certain limitations. He said the district management and police are coordinating with the NDMA to overcome the drainage problems. He said rain emergency committees are supervising resolution of civic issues in Larkana, Qambar and other adjoining areas. Later, he visited different parts of Larkana along with Deputy Commissioner, Mohammad Noman Siddique, Mayor Khair Mohammad Sheikh and officials of the departments of public health engineering, municipalities, irrigation and others.