KARACHI: While the water crisis in Karachi persisted for the second consecutive day, the Meteorological department forecast on Tuesday another heat spell in the coming days.
According to the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), a deep depression is forming up over the Bay of Bengal which is likely to intensify into a tropical storm or possibly a Category 1 cyclone in the next 24 to 48 hours.
The system is likely to move towards central Indian region and will dissipate there. However, it may again cut off sea breeze in the coastal belt of Pakistan, resulting increase in temperature of up to 41°C from tomorrow (October 19) to October 22. The heatwave will be lesser in intensity than one experienced in the city a week ago.
PMD Spokesperson Dr Abdul Rashid said the new system developing over the Bay of Bengal will have no effects on any other part of Pakistan and will not result in rainfall in the country.
The Met office has advised the citizens to avoid direct sunlight and refrain from going out unnecessarily during the coming heatwave.
In the meantime, fog engulfed the city in the wee hours of Tuesday. Explaining its reason, Dr Rashid said that it was a sign of the changing weather.
Most parts of the city are still not receiving water as the effects of the power shutdown at the Dhabeji, Gharo and Pipri pumping stations continue.
Upon request of the National Transmission and Dispatch Company (NTDC), the K-Electric had turned off power supply to the areas where pumping stations are located. Both the companies had taken the Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) in confidence for the 12-hour power halt.
KWSB spokesperson Rizwan Hyder had earlier said that the water board had only allowed the power companies to suspend the power supply for 12 hours. However, when contacted later, he informed that the power supply to the main pumping station in Dhabeji, which should have been resumed by 6pm Monday evening, was not restored until 10pm as the NTDC delayed the work.
Hyder added that at Gharo pumping station, the power supply was restored on Tuesday after 12 additional hours.
Hyder explained that after pumping starts, it takes at least 36 hours for the water to reach the tail areas of the city which include North Karachi and Surjani Town. This is the reason many areas have still not started receiving water, he said.
The KWSB spokesperson added that since the Gharo pumping station had started operating on Tuesday, areas such as Shah Faisal Colony, Karsaz and their adjoining localities will start receiving water in the late hours of Wednesday.
Most parts of the city will have received water by today (Wednesday) morning, Hyder maintained.
Meanwhile, it has been reported that exploiting the situation, water tankers have increased their charges for supplying water to the residents. Water tankers carrying 3,000 gallons, which charged Rs4,000 earlier, were demanding Rs6,000 to Rs7,000, it was reported.
A resident of Muhammad Ali Society, Mumtaz Siddiqui, complained that the people had no choice but to afford expensive water tankers as the water supply was at halt.