KARACHI - Karachiites are facing severe problems due to absence of quality public transport.

The roads of the metropolis are, most of the time, choked with Qingui rickshaws despite the announcement of Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah for restoration of CNG bus service four months ago, The Nation has learnt here.

According to details, Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah on June has announced that 36 CNG buses of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) will hit the roads during the current month in Karachi which will be followed by mass transit programme to facilitate the common citizens.

Despite the announcement, the KMC has failed to restore the bus service during the last two months as citizens are facing trouble due to lack of proper mode of transportation.

Earlier, the KMC administrator said the bus service had been launched on two long routes in the City - from Quaidabad to Landhi - with about 36 buses out of 78.

He said the service would provide a convenient and cheap travel facility to citizens through the comfortable CNG buses. Ticket booths would be established alongside both the routes.

The Sindh has issued around Rs20 million for restoration of this project but for the last couple of months, the project has to be materialised.

The project has launched second time. Earlier, the bus service was suspended due to lack of funds in the KMC account. All the 78 buses were stationed at a compound situated in Surjani Town locality in a terminal especially constructed for these buses.

After the suspension of the project, all the buses were standing at the terminal without tyres, batteries, glasses and other expensive parts as these parts had been stolen.

After the repairing work of the buses from the allocated fund by the Sindh government, the buses are still standing at the terminal under the security of only two wardens of the KMC.

Citizens complained that a metropolis which have around 20 million population, also the largest city of the country as well as the economic, industrial and commercial hub of Pakistan, its citizens are facing the absence of any convenient transit system. People are compelled to travel on the roofs of the buses due to shortage of public tranpsort.

Sindh government has conceived various projects of transportation like Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) and Karachi Circular Railway but no progress has been witnessed yet in completion of these projects. 

Exploiting the situation, the Qingui rickshaw operators have taken advantage from the incapability of the government and gripped the transport system as every road and stop has now been choked with rickshaws.

When this scribe contacted KMC administrator Rauf Akhter Farooqui and Project Director Ghulam Rasool, they did not respond to the repeated calls.