Karachi: no major allocation

Editorial June 23, 2024


Although the Sindh government has decided against initiating any new large-scale infrastructure projects in the country’s biggest city in the upcoming fiscal year, a large chunk of funding has been allocated for ongoing projects and several smaller new projects, signaling that the government is choosing to focus on the small things, rather than any single headline-grabbing project. While this approach is unconventional for Pakistan, it is common in several more developed countries and may simply reflect the confidence of the PPP’s leaders — their party has been running the province since 2012, and at this point, they need to be able to point to improvements in general quality of life, rather than big, shiny objects.

One notable example is the over 3.18 billion that will be allocated to the Greater Karachi Sewerage Plan. Improving sewerage and sanitation might not impress the average voter, but they are far more likely to help citizens live longer and healthier lives than the addition of new towers. Most of the largest allocations are for transportation — Rs2.79 billion for the Karachi BRT Red Line, Rs850 million for the Orange Line, and almost Rs61 million for the Karachi Urban Mobility Yellow Line, along with Rs3 billion allocated for the purchase of 300 diesel hybrid buses. Meanwhile, Rs1.1 billion has been allocated for 1,300 new security cameras along the Red Zone Airport Corridor under the Safe City project, along with a broader allocation to improve citywide monitoring using the Sindh Police Video Surveillance System, which will see 10,000 CCTV cameras installed at 2,000 new locations in Karachi, with Rs1.63 million set aside for this purpose. Whether or not the cameras can address the increasing lawlessness on the streets of the city remains to be seen.

Overall, the allocations for Karachi show a more pragmatic approach to development, prioritising the completion of major projects and addressing critical urban challenges which, if done earnestly, can forge a path to sustainable development.


Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ