KARACHI - Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that his government has worked out plans to construct Southern bypass and Red Line Rapid Bus Transport (RBT) project in Karachi and Hyderabad bypass project for which he needs support of Asian Development Bank.

This he said while holding a meeting with Asian Development Bank (ADB) eight-member delegation led by its Country Director Xiaohong Yang. The chief minister was assisted by provincial ministers, Jam Mehtab Dahar, Syed Nasir Shah, Imdad Pitafi, Chairman P&D Mohammad Waseem, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput, secretary education Aziz Uqaili, Secretary Finance Hassan Naqvi, Secretary Works Aijaz Memon, Secretary Transport Raheem Soomro and others.

The chief minister said that the ADB is one of the most important partners of Sindh government in terms of infrastructure development, transport, education and health. “We have planned some most important projects in transport, education and roads sectors in which ADB support and cooperation is required to implement them,” he said.

P&D Chairman Mohammad Waseem briefing the meeting said that Red Line RBT project has been planned to launch from Model Colony to Numaish via University road. This is one of the important corridor for which the government has almost completed all the formalities such as development of Mass Transit Authority, induction of necessary staff and more recruitment is also in the pipeline.

Transport Minister Nasir Shah said that the Sindh government is developing Orange Line RBT and the federal government is constructing Green Line. “We are thankful to ADB that its team is also working to develop integration plan for all the different RBT lines,” he said.

The chief minister told the director that the Red Line project is being sent to the federal government for approval. “We [Sindh government and ADB] would sing the agreement once the project is approved,” he said and added by the time the P&D and Transport department would be completing the other requirements. “I want to perform ground breaking ceremony of the project by the end of this year,” he said.

Syed Murad Ali Shah said that with the assistance of ADB Rs15,559 million 328 kilometer roads are being constructed. Thul to Kandhkot Road, Sheranpur to Ratodero Raod and Digri to Naukot Road would be comepleted shortly while work on the roads like Khyber to Snaghar via Tando Adam, Sanghar to Mirpurkhas Via Sindhri and Tando Mohammad Khan to Badin are in progress.

The chief minister directed Minister Works Imdad Pitafi and Secretary Works Aijaz Memon to personally monitor the progress of these roads and keep sending progress report to him. “He added that from these road schemes an amount of Rs3.1 billion saving has been made, therefore the saved amount may be allowed to utilize for the construction of two other roads from Tangwani to Jacobabad and other one in Hyderabad district. On this Director ADB assured the chief minister that she would get its approval from bank and would be done as planned by the Sindh government.

Education Minister Jam Mehtab Dahar and Secretary Education Aziz Uqaili briefed the meeting about a newly prepared 300 million dollar project of Sindh Education Sector Improvement Project. Under the project, necessary improvement in the entire education system operating in the public sector would be made. The director ADB advised the education department to send the proposal to the ADB for onward deliberation and consultation for its approval. The P&D chairman proposed to construct a bypass at Hyderabad to cater to the traffic coming from Mirpurkhas, Tando Allahyar and Badin for national highway towards Sukkur and upcountry.

The meeting decided to complete paper work of the project so that it could be taken up for further discussion.

The chief minister thanked the ADB for their support through Flood Emergency Reconstruction Project under which the damaged road infrastructure was developed. The chief minister presented traditional khes, ajrak, Sindi music CDs and decoration piece to the visiting ADB director who has recently taken over.