Islamabad - Dysfunctional street lighting has been a longstanding issue in Islamabad. In most of the sectors, the street lights infrastructure has totally collapsed. In fact, in a posh sector like F-10, street light fittings from the 80s are still in use. However, things have started to change. In May, the local councillor from F-10/2 broke ground on Islamabad’s first LED lights project in his constituency. 

Afzal Khan got elected as a councillor from F-10 on PTI’s platform in the 2015 local govt elections. It was part of his manifesto to address the street lights issue.

Soon after getting elected though, he realised that it was an uphill task for an array of reasons: The newly formed Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad had no funds of its own and till date, the elected representatives including the councillors have no powers transferred to them.

To make things more complicated, he is part of the opposition in MCI. 

However, through continued efforts, he was able to get the principal approval for LED lights for his constituency. This was going to be the first ever LED project in a residential sector of Islamabad, as previously, LED lights were only installed on main avenues.

The major hurdle now was getting the funds approved. “Convincing the authorities for LED lights in a residential sector was a daunting task in itself, as no such policy is in place even today, but dealing with the finance department was challenging on a whole new level “, said Afzal Khan. It took him almost a year to finally get the funds approved and turn the project into a reality. 

Work is in progress on the said project which involves complete overhaul of the street lights infrastructure. The project will reduce the street lights power consumption by half from 22 KW to 11 KW saving both electricity and public funds. The excitement of the residents is palpable as they will soon be experiencing a well lit sector after a decade of living in dark and gloomy streets. 

Expressing hope that his constituency will serve as a Model Sector for the rest of Islamabad, Afzal khan said “I think it is only logical for the MCI to emulate this model in other sectors, as we need to cut down on our power consumption without compromising on the city’s lighting.”