Sindh’s chief minister has decided to launch the Green Line bus rapid transit service (BRTS) in Karachi this month and the Yellow Line in March. He has also directed the Sindh Solid Waste Management Board (SSWMB) to strengthen front-end garbage collection in the city.
CM Syed Murad Ali Shah chaired a meeting of the Provincial Coordination & Implementation Committee, which was attended by representatives of the provincial and federal governments, on Wednesday.
The meeting was told that the Green Line corridor up to Numaish has been completed, while the turnstile of the project has also been tested. The project’s phased commercial operation will be commenced in late December, and it will become fully operational the following month.
The Sindh Infrastructure Development Company Limited (SIDCL) requested the provincial government to approve the Green Line bus fare on the basis of input costs of the project. The CM directed the company to send a summary to the cabinet, the competent authority for approving the fare. The 3.88km Orange Line corridor and all its structures of bus depots have been completed, while electrical, mechanical and finishing works are in progress, and are expected to be completed this month.
Besides the procurement of the intelligent transportation system and buses, the SIDCL has been mandated with running the BRTS operations for three years. The project has almost been completed, while the buses have also arrived. The meeting decided that the Green Line will be launched with 75 buses this month.
Trash collection fees
SSWMB Managing Director Zubair Channa told the meeting that municipal solid waste has huge revenue potential in terms of household services, not only in residential areas but in all commercial areas, restaurants and industrial units as well.
According to law, all the commercial and household units are mandated to pay municipal cess or fee for the waste collection service that is being provided to them. The informal sector and unauthorised people under the patronage of the municipal agencies have been collecting household fees even in the areas where the SSWMB is providing the services.
An estimated Rs3.5 billion can be generated a year from the city’s residential areas alone. The SSWMB has decided to collect municipal fees from the residential and commercial areas, and mandated the board’s management to explore the options for collecting the fees.
Approximately 15,000 industrial units also generate 1,500 to 2,000 tonnes of municipal waste, so the SSWMB is also exploring the options to collect fees or cess from each of the industrial units for the municipal services being provided to them.
Storm water drains
According to the report furnished by the municipal commissioner of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation, all the 238 intercepting units at the Mehmoodabad Nullah have been demolished, with Rs10,440,000 paid as compensation to the eligible locally displaced persons.
All the 4,058 intercepting units at the Gujjar Nullah have been demolished, with Rs260,730,000 paid as compensation.
At the Orangi Nullah, 1,696 of the 1,703 intercepting units have been demolished, with Rs145,080,000 paid as compensation. Only industrial units of the SITE sub-division are left, and will be demolished soon.
The CM said the Lyari Development Authority has been directed to spare 500 acres in Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Township, Deh Mandani, Scheme-42 and Hawkesbay, and the Malir Development Authority has been directed to spare 250 acres in Taiser Town, Scheme-45 to resettle the affected people.
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