ISLAMABAD          -      The Federal government is likely to request the Supreme Court to allow use of part of Bahria Town Settlement Fund (up to Rs.125 billion) as a federal component of Rs.1100 billion Karachi Transformation Plan (KTP).

As per the official data released by the Planning Commission out of the total of more than Rs.1100 billion Karachi Transformation Plan (KTP), the Sindh Share is Rs.375 billion while the remaining is federal government component.

Although the federal government share is Rs.725 billion but the official spokesman in its statement has insisted that it is Rs 736 billion. 

As per the spokesman, the Federal Government has committed five projects under the Karachi Transformation Plan announced by the Prime Minister and require additional funding which includes Greater Karachi Water Supply Project (K-IV)  Rs.46 billion, Karachi Circular Railway (KCR)     Rs.300 billion, Railway Freight Corridor Rs.131 billion, Green Line BRT Rs.5 billion and Rehabilitation of River, Nullahs & Storm Water Drains and resettlement of affected people Rs.254 billion

“The total cost of these projects is estimated at Rs.736 billion,” said the spokesman.  Of these the government plans to request the Supreme Court to allow use of part of the Bahria Town Settlement Fund (up to Rs.125 billion) expected to be available during three years period of KTP. Hence the funding estimated to be arranged by the Federal Government is Rs.611 billion. The balance Rs.375 billion (out of the total package of more than Rs.1100 billion) is shown as Provincial Government responsibility. 

During the meetings held for finalization of KTP, the Sindh Government expressed the desire to take responsibility for the KCR project. However, Railways is a Federal subject, as per Part-II of Schedule-IV of the Constitution of Pakistan. Equally importantly the Supreme Court of Pakistan has also conducted hearings with regard to KCR and directed that the Federal Government/Railways undertake the project. The Federal Government is therefore, duty bound to implement this project. As such, the execution responsibility and the financial burden of the same which is estimated at Rs.300 billion has been included in the Federal Government responsibility under the Karachi package. 

It is, however, once again reiterated, that the Federal Government is looking at working in collaboration with the Provincial Government for the development of Karachi.  The real objective is to help the citizens of Karachi and not an effort to score political points. The details of the Federal & Provincial responsibilities & funding are only being issued to remove ambiguities which have arisen in the last couple of days.

Meanwhile, Minister for Planning, Development & Special Initiatives Asad Omer chaired a meeting to discuss implementation of the Federal component of Karachi Transformation Plan. Secretaries and Senior Officers of Ministry of Planning, Railways, Water Resources and NDMA participated in the meeting.

The meeting discussed matters related to the projects such as Karachi Greater Water Supply (K-IV), Karachi Circular Railway (KCR), Green Line BRT, Railway Freight Corridor and Rehabilitation of storm water drains.

The Minister asked the relevant officials to prepare time bound action plans for execution of their respective projects and to identify whether any approvals/NOCs were required from the Provincial Government. He also directed the implementing agencies to indicate their quarter wise financial requirements so that the funding can be earmarked accordingly. The Minister said that these projects are to be executed at a fast pace as per the directions of the Prime Minister.