KARACHI                      -            Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that 449 schemes of worth Rs40.6 billion are underway in the city under the Annual Development Plan (ADP), while work on 11 new schemes worth Rs7 billion will be launched to make the city more beautiful and livable.

He was presiding over a meeting held here on Friday to review progress on the ongoing schemes in the provincial capital and discuss new schemes proposed for the city.

The meeting was attended by Minister for Local Government Syed Nasir Shah, Advisor to CM Murtaza Wahab, P&D Chairman Mohammad Waseem, Secretary Finance Hassan Naqvi, Secretary Local Government Roshan Shaikh, KDA DG, Water Board MD Asadullah Khan and Karachi Package PD Khalid Masroor.

Briefing the chief minister, Minister for Local Government Syed Nasir Shah said that 11 new schemes had been identified on the directives of the chief minister.

“These include construction of Shahrah-e-Noor Jahan from Abdullah College to Qalandria Chowk, Shah Jehan Avenue from water pump to Qalandria Chowk, including restoration of a storm water drain, a flyover at Safoora Chowk, a bridge at Jauhar Chowrangi, a road from Grex village to Y-Junction, including construction of a storm water drain, construction of Syed Rais Ahmed Jaferi Road from People’s Chowrangi to Bank, including drain, underpass at Star Gate, two-lane bridge over Garden Road, underpass at Pir Sibghatullah Shah Rashdi Road at National Stadium, construction of roads surrounding the Supreme Court, beautification of the Empress Market, including greenery, fixation of broken glasses, repair of clock and lighting effects around the market. Renovation and installation of lighting effects on a church were also discussed and approved in principle at the meeting.

The chief minister directed the P&D chairman, Secretary Local Government and Karachi Package PD to sit together and prepare the blueprint of these schemes so that these could be approved in time and launched at the earliest. These schemes may cost around Rs7 billion.

The CM said that he had released Rs15.14 billion against 449 ongoing schemes of Rs40.6 billion under the Karachi Package. Expressing his displeasure, the chief minister said that against the release of Rs15 billion, only Rs7.1 billion had been utilized so far.

In reply, Minister for Local Government Nasir Shah said that patch work on roads had been launched recently in all six districts. “The utilization would be more than expected expenditures,” he added.

The chief minister also expressed his displeasure over delay in the opening of the left track of the road, starting from Khaliq-u-Zaman Road towards DHA phase-II. The chief minister was told that a building on the left side of the Punjab Chowrangi Road had been vacated, but only two shops were yet to be vacated.

The chief minister said that he had gone through the lay out plan and the building was illegal and he directed commissioner to get bulldozed and restore the track/road towards Sunset Boulevard.

The chief minister was also displeased to point out that most of the mian road were being used as parking of vehicles. The entire Khaliq-u-Zaman Road, including at Dehli Colony, Tariq Road, Clifton Roads, Tariq Road and various roads of Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Nazimabad and North Nazimabad were giving look of car parking. He directed Commissioner Karachi to pass on his directives to the DIG Traffic to stop it and report him.

When the scheme of Karachi Zoological Garden came under discussion, the chief minister again expressed his dismay over the slow pace of work. “This is quite unacceptable that the schemes was going very slow though I have released all the relevant funds,” he said. Mr Shah said that the elephant present in the Zoo had no tendency to give rides to the children, therefore he directed Minister Local Government Syed Nasir Shah to procure an Asian elephant on which visiting children could get rides.

The chief minister said that the schemes which have been completed such as Hyder Ali Road underpass, Tipu Sultan underpass, Sunset Boulevard Bridge, Bridges at Korangi and various others would be taken out from the ADP book by submitting their PC-IV.

Shah directed commissioner to talk to the concerned authorities and get the work of Nathankhan U-turn started. “I want its inauguration latest by April,” he said. He also pointed out that the work the storm water drain right from Star Gate to Chakore Nala has been left incomplete. He also ordered start of work on the scheme.

Shah said that the road going towards KN Academy should be reconstructed because it has become of the busy roads of the city.

It was also decided to beautify different roads such as Stadium Road. Reconstruction of Kakri Ground, completion of 8000 road, and development of North Nazimabad park was also decided in the meeting.

Shah directed Chairman P&D to prepare a scheme of construction Mehran Highway for the next financial year and it would also be completed in the same year.

The chief minister was told that the widening of Orangi Bridge has been completed. Mr Shah said that he would start visits of the on-going schemes within next 15 days, therefore work on them must be started accordingly.

He also directed MD Water Board Asadullah Khan to visit the city and conduct the survey of the gutter system and repair it where was damaged and gushing out water onto the roads. “This is not for to tell you each and everything – but it is your responsibility to take initiative on your own,” he concluded.