KARACHI: The judicial commission on water and sanitation has given time till December this year to the authorities to make sewage treatment plants functional to end pollution at Sea View Beach in Karachi being caused by the discharge of sewage. Justice (retd) Amir Hani Muslim, the head of the Supreme Court-mandated commission, ordered the defence secretary to submit an undertaking to the commission in this regard by May 28.
The secretary will have to assure the commission that sewage treatment plants will be installed for phases I to VII of Defence Housing Authority (DHA). “The proposed undertaking shall bind the officers of the DHA and Cantonment Board Clifton [CBC],” reads the commission’s order.
CBC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Muhammad Sajjad Ahmed Khan informed the commission that the board would advertise tenders for the sewage treatment plants by May 23 and facilities will be made functional by December, 2018.
The commission directed the secretary to pledge in the undertaking that the sewage of DHA Phase-VIII would be connected to the treatment plant at Creek Vista Apartments, adjacent to the Defence Authority Golf Club. The commission gave four months to the defence secretary for the implementation of these orders.
The commission also heard the issue of supply of clean drinking water to the residents of DHA’s phases I to VIII. Justice (retd) Muslim directed the provincial secretary and commission’s focal person, Asif Haider Shah, to coordinate with the defence secretary and CBC CEO. Together, the officials will discuss to resolve drinking water supply issue and apprise the commission on May 28, the commission instructed.
The commission also took up the matter of the realignment of K-IV project through which 260 million gallons of water per day from the Indus River will be supplied to Karachi. It summoned former project director Saleem Siddiqi today (Tuesday) to explain whether he was authorised to change the alignment that had been causing the delay. The judicial commission also summoned the Malir deputy commissioner along with the relevant land records.
The project being executed by the Frontier Works Organisation was initially scheduled to be completed by June 2018. The federal and Sindh governments are jointly financing the scheme.
Malir Assistant Commissioner Muhammad Ishaq rejected the justification provided by a K-IV project consultant, according to which the realignment was made because the required land could not be acquired. Ishaq claimed that the acquisition had largely been completed except for a five-kilometre stretch of land.
The incumbent director of the K-IV project, Asad Zamin, and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) Managing Director (MD) Khalid Mehmood Shaikh sought time from the commission to submit details of the issues related to the project. Justice (retd) Muslim asked the two officials to come up with complete details on May 28.
The commission directed the focal person and KWSB MD to complete the work of water supply line for Baldia Town by June 30. After the project’s completion, the town will be supplied water from the Baldia hydrant.