KARACHI: The government has decided to build another bridge over River Indus to connect Ghotki with Kandhkot helping traffic flow between Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan, announced Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah on Thursday.
Shah made the announcement after meeting a six-member Chinese delegation of Ranken Railway Construction Group Co. Ltd, who met him at CM House.
The Sindh government has built two bridges on River Indus, one at Thatta-Sujawal and the other at Jhirk-Mula Katiar, which is near completion. “We have planned another bridge on River Indus at Kandhkot-Ghotki,” he said, adding that it will be 1.5 kilometres long and will ease traffic flow between Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan. “[The bridge] will also reduce travelling distance of over 75 kilometres between Ghotki and Kandhkot.”
The bridge will be launched under a public-private partnership as it will have immense commercial transport, said the CM. “I would like to invite you to participate in its bids to be invited in the third week of July,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Chinese delegation, which was led by Tang Jikai, showed its interest in circular railways and building the Kandhkot-Ghotki bridge. They set up a meeting with finance secretary Sohail Rajput to discuss their partnership.
A delegation member pointed out how they have expertise in bullet trains, circular railways and the construction of roads and bridges. They have studied the requirements and ridership priorities of different corridors.
During the meeting, Shah admitted that Karachi needs a well-planned and modern circular railway to provide efficient, effective and fast transport facilities without creating any sort of pollution.
The government is also working on environmental issues, he said. Keeping in view climatic changes, the government will launch special tree plantations, vegetation on mountains and will also work to introduce such trees that can be grown in the desert area of Thar, Kohistan and Kachho area, he said. “The Sindh government will need help from China and others countries working on the environment,” said Shah.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2016.