ISLAMABAD                  -                  After failing to fund dysfunctional fountains and leaving them for private sector to operate, the 19 fountains – once the beauty of capital - still await sponsors.

Most of the traditional and cybernetic fountains installed in capital city to give it a smart look are still dysfunctional due to lack of care and unavailability of required funds.

There were 19 traditional foundations installed years ago at different locations of Islamabad i.e. Zero Point, Faisal Avenue, and Aabpara Chowk.

Later, the city managers also brought seven new cybernetic fountains in 2009 to make the city more beautiful and attractive. Though, the old fountains were a pleasant feature of the city but the cybernetic fountains with amazing lights were an addition to the beauty of capital in true sense. These fountains were an attraction for locals as well as tourists.    These fountains remained dysfunctional for many years due to the lack of care and interest of the concerned formation of the Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) which always make unavailability of funds an excuse.

Meanwhile, the private sector was asked to adopt public facilities under joint venture with MCI but the policy found a cold response from the business community of the city.

As of today, out of total 26, only seven fountains have been made functional with the help of private firms under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) while more sponsors are still required for rest of 19 fountains.   

According to details, four fountains are being operated by PTCL, oneeach by Fasil Steel Private Limited, Centaurus Mall and Silver Oaks.    

When contacted, the Director Environment MCI Asghar Ali Zardari confirmed that 19 fountains are still dysfunctional due to expiry of maintenance contracts to operate these fountains.

“The fountains are not technically out of order but dysfunctional due to unavailability of funds,” he informed, adding: “We are trying to operationalise all fountains through joint CSR.” The city managers were spending over Rs10 million annually on 26 fountains and on average each fountain costs around Rs4-6 lakh annually.

However, unfortunately, the city could not found companies to operate these fountains at the cost of few thousand rupees monthly.