Stench engulfs Karachi as offal lies undisposed

Municipal authorities fail to pick up animal remains from streets after Eidul Azha


SHEHARYAR ALI September 05, 2017
The offal remained on the streets on the third day of Eidul Azha, along with accumulated rainwater. PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI: With Karachi not yet recovered from the recent rainfall played havoc in the city due to mismanagement of municipal authorities and Sindh government, the authorities’ failure to remove offal from the streets added to the citizens’ miseries.

The city, which has yet to recover from the effects of the recent rainfall, has now been invaded by a foul stench. Animal waste, including offal, still awaits disposal in most streets of Karachi.

Talking to The Express Tribune, a resident of Federal B area in District Central, Daniyal Ali Khan complained that walking in any street in his neighbourhood is unbearable due to the putrid stench of rotting offal. He said another issue being faced is the presence of rainwater accumulated on the street.

Ali added that despite several complaints, there has been no action by the authorities and in the end all they did was shift the offal to the corner of the street and covering it with plastic. Ali also complained that there are several locations that have been converted into temporary garbage dumps, causing the surrounding areas to reek of rotting refuse.

A resident of Bahadurabad, Mumtaz Siddiqui, shared that they waited for the authorities for one day and then arranged a private contractor to dispose of the offal using his machinery.

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Siddiqui said that things in the city are terrible at the moment and recalled a time when offal was disposed of by the municipal authorities in a timely manner. The authorities also used to pour limestone powder to eliminate the bacteria and germs at one time, however, those days are gone, he lamented. Siddiqui questioned where the Chinese company that had been hired to lift garbage in the city was, as they were not seen during the offal-removal operation.

The Express Tribune spoke to Shehri-Citizens for a Better Environment Director Raza Gardezi, who questioned the performance of the Sindh Solid Waste Management Board (SSWMB) and said the government has failed to activate the city-wise municipal system and has instead created a giant provincial-based board for waste management for which they were recently awarded a budget of Rs2.95 billion. He added that there is a chaos of management due to the power struggle between the Muttahida Qaumi Movement and Pakistan Peoples Party and it is the citizens who are suffering.

Gardezi shared that it is still the mandate of the mayor and Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) to dispose of solid waste, however, they complain about the authority and funds the provincial government is now giving to the SSWMB and unfortunately the board had failed terribly in its operation.

He pointed out that if drains were cleaned by the KMC and waste picked up by the SSWMB, then there would be no chance of urban flooding during the rains. It is not the rain that causes urban flooding, it mismanagement by the authorities, he said, adding that the condition after Eid has become even worse due to the addition of offal lying on the city’s streets.

With prayer, sacrifices, Pakistani Muslims celebrate Eidul Azha

He added that the issue is not that municipal authorities are not working; they lack authority and funds that has disturbed their whole operation.

”How could they make a provincial-level board for waste management? Around the world provincial governments never perform such operations; they lie solely with the municipal authorities,” said Gardezi.

A deputy director of SSWMB told The Express Tribune on the basis of anonymity that throughout the offal removal drive, no Chinese machinery is being used. How could the Chinese handle offal disposal when there is no such practice in China? asked the official. However, this year they are observing the process and by next year they will be operating the system, he said.

DMC East Chairman Moeed Anwar shared that they have limited machinery and have also hired a private contractor and dug trenches near the Malir River for disposal purposes. He added that they know there are complaints, however, their teams are working 24/7 to provide relief to the citizens.

Though the city’s mayor did not respond to requests for a comment by The Express Tribune, he told the media that he has raised a question over the SSWMB’s awarding the offal removal contract on Eidul Azha for only two districts of Karachi. They get the whole budget but are neglecting the rest of the city as well as the province in regards to cleanliness and lifting of offal of sacrificial animals, accused Wasim Akhtar.

Ahead of Eidul Azha, makeshift cattle markets appear

Akhtar added that despite lack of funds we are trying our best to serve the city, however, citizens must also support their mayor who has very little power to work for the city.

On the other hand, Assistant Medical Superintendent of Civil Hospital, Karachi Dr Khadim Qureshi has warned that there are high chances of disease being spread if offal is left on the streets alongside accumulated rainwater. He added that along with nasal diseases, there are high chances of gastrointestinal, diarrhoea and typhoid, urging citizens to take precautionary measures to protect themselves from becoming victim to these illnesses.

COMMENTS (2)

Mohmmad Jamal Uddin | 4 years ago | Reply When our rulers would think that the Ruling is an "Honour" not a "Responsibility" then certain the stench of their incompetency,nepotism,bribery etc mixed with the stench of the dead meat has become most forceful so that it is dreadfully everywhere!
Rollin & Trollin | 4 years ago | Reply What ever happened to having a Chinese run garbage collection and disposal setup for Karachi ?? Just talk. The stench would be enough to send any self-respecting 'sanitation engineer' racing to the Arabian Sea,
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