KARACHI        -    Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Syed Ali Haider Zaidi on Saturday appealed Karachiites to own the city, take pain for it and actively participate in the Federal Government’s initiative “Clean Karachi” and all other activities aimed at the uplift of the city for the good of their own and their generations.

He was speaking during a meeting with members of Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry to mobilise the business community for successful and timely execution of this great initiative taken on the directives of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

On this occasion, KCCI leadership announced to donate Rs 10 million to the fund created for the big task of cleaning Karachi. Besides KCCI leaders and members, Chairman Karachi Port Trust, Real Admiral Jameel Akhtar and Commissioner Karachi Iftikhar Shahlwani were also present on the occasion.

The first phase of Clean Karachi campaign was announced by the Minister last month in Islamabad. This mega campaign has been started in partnership with the City Government led by Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s Mayor, Waseem Akhtar and Federal Government institutions including Frontier Works Organization, National Logistics Cell, Karachi Port Trust and Port Qasim.

Syed Ali Haider Zaidi said that under the first phase, five main nullahs in the city were cleaned, which helped to maintain the outflow of recent rain and saved the city from big loss of human and property.

Under the second phase, he said, there would be two-pronged strategy. Firstly, the people of Karachi would be appealed and mobilized to expose on social media every individual, group or business organization contributing to the mess in the city. “If you see any individual throwing garbage on a road or witness any industry discharging untreated liquid waste into nullahs, rivers and sea, just share their name, pictures and other details on social media tagged as Name and Shame. We will send it to media houses to expose them,” he stressed. Then, he added, the campaign would focus on collecting, lifting of garbage dumps to the designated landfill sites and its proper dispose off. For better coordination with the business community regarding cleaning of the city, he announced to form a committee based on KCCI representatives and Members of National Assembly elected from Karachi.

Sharing his experience of getting the main city nullahs cleaned before the recent monsoon rains, the federal minister revealed that even human remains were found. He said that the primary concern of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government was to ensure better environment and cleanliness in this international city and economic hub of the country. Besides, more than 700 MW power could be generated through the huge quantity of solid waste generated in the city daily. The government would also work on this option, he said.

He said that the main issues of the city were collecting, lifting and proper disposing off the solid and liquid waste, water, infrastructure and transport. All these required collective and concrete efforts by the governments, private sector and the general public. For getting the required results, he added, the city needs a master plan.

Ali Zaidi said that after 18th amendment, there were certain restrictions for the Federal Government to work on a comprehensive development/uplift programme for the city. However, he said, “we shall do for the good of Karachi whatever is possible for us.”

Earlier, KCCI President Junaid Esmail Makda, Chairman Businessmen Group in KCCI Siraj Kassam Teli and Vice Chairman M Zubair Motiwala apprised the Federal Minister of the civic issues and gave suggestions. The KCCI leadership also assured full support, on behalf of the Chamber, towards Clean Karachi drive and all other initiatives for the betterment of the city.