FWO tasked to clean Karachi’s key nullahs

Sindh govt to remove encroachments around city's watercourses

Our Correspondent July 31, 2020


The Pakistan Army's subsidiary organisation - the Frontier Works Organisation - is going to remove sludge from three key nullahs of Karachi and will also help the provincial government of Sindh in lifting encroachments around the city's watercourses.

This was decided on Friday in a meeting chaired by Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and attended by a number of officials including Corps Commander Karachi Lt Gen Humayun Aziz and the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Chairman Lt Gen Mohammad Afzal.

The meeting took place a day after Prime Minister Imran Khan asked the Pakistan Army to help in cleaning up the economic hub of the country.

"I have asked the NDMA chairman to go to Karachi immediately and start the clean up in the aftermath of the rain. I have asked the Pakistan Army to also help in cleaning up the city," the PM o wrote on Thursday in a post on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Earlier on Wednesday, the premier said the federal government would not leave the people of Karachi alone in this difficult situation, assuring that the government would take all possible steps to resolve the problems facing the Karachiites.

The prime minister had also sought a detailed review report from the NDMA on the condition of storm drains in Karachi.

The ongoing monsoon spell turned many roads in the port city into rivers of filthy rainwater and left many houses and shops flooded. As many as 10 people, including children, died in the last few days of rainfall in the metropolis.

The Sindh government had insisted that the situation "could have been worse" and claimed that the situation was "promptly" handled.

In the meeting on Wednesday, Karachi corps commander and NDMA chairman assured the CM that they would be supporting the Sindh government in rectifying design defects of the nullahs and the Green Line - a mass transit project that is still non-functional.

They also assured the Sindh government that it would be supported in removal of encroachments along the nullahs. The chief minister thanked the corps commander and the NDMA chief for their support.

A separate meeting - chaired by Sindh Governor Imran Ismail - also dicussed the the difficulties faced by the citizens of Karachi during the recent rains and the arrangements being made to ensure drainage of rain water in future.

The NDMA chairman gave a detailed briefing to the participants including Federal Minitser for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi, Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar and Sindh Assembly Leader of Opposition Firdous Shamim Naqvi.

Speaking on the occasion, the governor said Prime Minister Imran Khan is very concerned about Karachi and has approved a summary to offer permanent solutions to t he city's issues.

"The federal government will never abandon this city. The government is committed to develop this city which is the economic hub of the counrty and will clean up the city with the help of the Pakistan Army, the FWO and the NDMA," he said.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has predicted that Karachi, Hyderabad, Thatta and Badin among other Sindh cities are likely to receive more rainfall.

The Wednesday meeting decided to hand over the job to clean three nullahs of the city to the FWO. These nullahs include Gujjar Nallah of District Central, the CBM Nallah of District Korangi and the storm water drains on both sides of Karachi's key thoroughfare Sharea Faisal.

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