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CM wants Malir flyover completed by 15th

CM wants Malir flyover completed by 15th

KARACHI: Expressing anger over the undue delay in completion of the Malir 15 flyover, Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah told the local government ministry on Friday to speed up the construction as its slow pace was causing hardship to the citizens. He gave two weeks to the officials to finish the job.

“I want you to open it for traffic not further than Jan 15,” said Mr Shah while presiding over a meeting of the LG ministry at CM House.

Senior minister for finance Syed Murad Ali Shah and LG minister Jam Khan Shoro also attended the meeting.

The CM stressed the need to accelerate the construction on the Malir flyover and the Golimar underpass in the larger interest of the public.

“The Malir 15 flyover has already consumed plenty of time. No further time should be lost,” said Mr Shah, adding that work on the Golimar underpass should also be finished at the earliest.

Karachi Metropolitan Corporation administrator Sajjad Abbasi told the meeting that just 37 per cent work on the Golimar underpass had been completed while the Malir flyover was getting the finishing touches.

Minister Shoro said the KMC had 17 storm drains and almost each of them was heavily encroached. He said people had built houses over those drains, leaving not more than five-foot width to such drains, which were originally 50 feet wide.

“This is one big problem that makes it difficult to clean those drains,” he said.

Mr Shoro said the Gujjar, Pichard Road and Kalri nullahs needed to be cleaned on emergency grounds before the advent of monsoon. It was not just to clean a nullah, he added, it first required to remove the heavy encroachments along their embankments.

Karachi commissioner Shoaib Siddiqui told the meeting that he had got cleared three kilometres of encroachment along Gujjar Nullah. He added that the government should start its lining and construction of roads on the cleared area to prevent re-emergence of encroachments.

“In this way the area would be utilised in the public interest and the unhealthy culture of encroachment of government land would come to an end,” he said.

The commissioner said most drains were choked and sewage gushed out from them, damaging the streets badly. The city would get an immaculate look if its drainage system got improved and roads and streets were properly maintained.

The CM told the LG authorities to marshal KMC and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board employees to keep the city clean.

“The KMC, district municipal corporations and KWSB have huge staffs. Even if 50 per cent of them are mobilised, this city would turn into one of the cleanliest cities in the world,” he said.

Mr Shah ordered the KMC administrator to develop close coordination with the KWSB to open the choked drains and carpet the roads running along them. He also asked him to make personal efforts for lifting of garbage accumulated in many areas of the city.

Finance and energy minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said he had met officials of the K-Electric a number of times and got settled Rs7 billion collected by it on account of electricity duty and got them settled against the KWSB electricity bills.

“The KWSB must improve its recoveries, which are hardly Rs600 million,” he said. “How is it possible for the KWSB to pay its salaries, clear power bills and carry out development work without improving its recovery system?”

The chief secretary promised that he would expedite releasing funds to the KMC as directed by the CM to help complete the strategy for lifting garbage and several ongoing development schemes in time.

Published in Dawn, January 2nd, 2016

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