KARACHI: To improve the overall infrastructure of the city, Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali has approved a special Karachi Package costing Rs1.98 billion
The plan seeks to repair important roads, upgrade main roundabouts and footpaths and also provide necessary equipments and facilities to the hospitals of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC). The CM approved this package while presiding over a meeting at CM House on Saturday.
The plan was presented by Karachi commissioner Asif Hyder Shah. Around Rs1.5 billion will be spent on the beautification and uplift works of roads in Clifton, Tariq Road and old National Highway.
The slow construction of Golimar Underpass is causing serious problems for smooth traffic flow, said the CM. The project has become a big problem for the people passing through that area every day, therefore, it must be completed at the earliest, he added.
Replying to this, Asif proposed the release of Rs300 million to complete the project immediately. The CM directed finance minister Syed Murad Ali Shah to provide the required funds for the completion of Golimar Underpass.
On April 18 this year, Sindh local government minister Jam Khan Shoro had assured that the construction of Golimar Underpass will be completed in three months. Due to technical reasons and the construction of the Green Line BRT flyover, the construction work of the underpass has been delayed, he said. Meanwhile, Karachi commissioner Asif Hyder Shah had said that the work on the underpass will be completed by June 30.
Work on the Golimar Underpass kicked off in April last year. Initially, a flyover was to be constructed at Golimar Chowrangi instead of the underpass. At the eleventh hour, all the plans were changed and the flyover was converted into an underpass to facilitate the Green Line BRT flyover, which is also supposed to pass over Golimar Chowrangi.
In the span of one year, the underpass has seen three project directors. Initially, KMC’s chief engineer Asadullah Shah was looking after the project and then Shafiqur Rehman was made project director when Shah was given the charge of KMC’s director-general of parks.
Improving public facilities
The CM also said that he had received reports that the condition of most hospitals operating under KMC is deplorable. CT scan, MRI and some other equipment at Abbasi Shaheed Hospital are out-of-order. The hospital must be equipped properly to provide smooth services round the clock, he said.
The commissioner said that he has floated a proposal worth Rs177 million to provide necessary facilities to all the KMC hospitals by upgrading their machinery, equipments and undertake repair works where necessary. The chief minister approved the special grant of Rs177 million for KMC hospitals.
Expressing his displeasure over the heaps of garbage on the main roads, CM said it is not my job to remind KMC of its responsibilities. He directed KMC officials and administrators to ensure lifting of garbage before holy month of Ramazan and then develop a mechanism of lifting garbage regularly.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 15th, 2016.