KARACHI - President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday reviewed progress on various ongoing development projects relating to roads and highways, refurbishing and remodelling of drainage system in eight districts, and projects being executed under public-private partnership in Sindh.

The president was chairing a meeting at Bilawal House, with Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, provincial ministers Manzoor Wassan, Syed Murad Ali Shah, M Ayaz Soomro, Agha Siraj Khan Durrani and Jam Saifullah Dharejo ensuring their presence, besides federal and provincial officials concerned.

At first the meeting reviewed progress on various projects being undertaken under the public-private partnership, including Hyderabad-Badin Road, the bridge connecting Jhirk-Mullakatiar, food storage and wheat silos in several districts of the province and the Hyderabad-Mirpurkhas dual carriageway.

The meeting was informed that work was underway on construction of wheat storage houses and silos in Karachi, Khairpur, Benazirabad, Ghotki and Sanghar at a cost of Rs4 billion. Each silo, being built on the BOO (build, operate and own) basis, will have a capacity of storing 70,000 metric tons of wheat. Bids have been invited to be examined after April 10, 2012.

President Zardari advised that wheat silos be built in such a way that floods and rains should not harm the stored wheat and food in future. In the second set of the briefing, the meeting reviewed the progress on the improvement of drainage system in Badin, Thatta, Umerkot, Mirpurkhas, Sanghar, Tando Allahyar, Benazirabad, Larkana and Dadu districts.

The meeting was informed that three schemes had been completed while others were nearing their completion. About 39 schemes under priority-I of the flood protection works have almost been completed while work on 25 other schemes under priority II was done by 92 percent. Contracts for 16 schemes have been awarded while the contracts for 17 other schemes are in advanced stage for award under priority III. The president advised to put the details of each project relating to drainage on website so that everyone could monitor progress on them.

President Asif Ali Zardari had directed for the preparation of a master plan for storm water drainage of Left Bank area of Sindh in the meeting held in Karachi in November 2011. The mater plan was prepared by a foreign consultant for restoring, remodelling and enhancing the capacity of existing drainage system and restoration of old existing Dhoras for 20 years event. The said plan included short and long term measures. About progress on roads, the meeting was informed that about 75 per cent of Hyderabad-MirPurkhas dual carriageway had been completed and the project was scheduled to be completed by June 30, 2012.

NHA Chairman Syed Muhammad Ali Gardezi, while briefing the meeting on progress made so far on ongoing road projects, said that Larkana-Qambar road was 80 per cent complete now, while 75 per cent work had been finished on Gharo-Keti Bunder project. Similarly, Larkana-Naudero-Lakhi road was almost finished whereas, Larkana-Khairpur bridge was 91 percent done. Work on Sakrand-Benazirabad road was completed by 95 per cent while work on various other roads projects was being undertaken with fast speed, he informed the meeting.