KARACHI - The Sindh government decided to remove Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) Managing Director Khalid Mehmood Sheikh because of rift with Provincial Minister for Local Government Saeed Ghani over not issuing NOCs to builders.

The issue was made after the sit-in protest of Association of Builders and Developer, held on November 22, outside the KW&SB Managing Director Secretariat located at Shahra-e-Faisal. Sources of local government department informed that a summary also been moved to the chief minister by Local Government Department to appoint new managing director of KW&SB.

Sources said that Managing Director Khalid Mehmood Sheikh went on leave without prior information after the rift with Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani. “Local government department immediately give additional charge of managing director to Deputy Managing Director (Technical Services) Assadullah Khan, considered as blue-eyed officer of high-ups of local government department.

Khalid Mehmood Sheikh had negotiated with Association of Builders and Developers (ABAD) and assured the office bearers of the association to early issuance of NOCs of water connection by water board.

However, deputy managing director Assadullah Khan refused to hold talk with protesters taking similar line as adopted by the local government minister who said that the builders association should approach water commission in this regard.  

It is worth to mentioning here that ABAD called off its seven-hour long sit-in after assurance by Managing Director KW&SB Khalid Mehmood Sheikh to release 150 pending NOCs of water connection to builders.

Sources said that the minister was not in favour to hold negotiation with ABAD on the issue of pending NOCs and he also conveyed his same message to MD Khalid Mehmood Sheikh despite the message Managing Director negotiated with ABAD, interestingly, Sheikh also handed over three pending NOCs on the spot to builders.

A key official of Karachi Water and Sewerage Board on condition of anonymity told this scribe that Sheikh had left from his office because of massive pressure of Water Commission to control water crisis in the metropolis, lack of fair distribution of water in the city while illegal water connections and illegal water hydrants. “It was due to pressures from the department over these issues that he was forced to take leave from his duty,” the official added.

When contacted, Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani said: “We are not removing KWSB managing director. We have tried contact him but his cell phone has not been responding for last three days. We are not aware about his leave, he said, adding that “However, I was told that he has tendered his resignation but I not aware of it,” he said.  Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) spokesperson Rizwan Haider, however, claimed that no decision has been taken place for the removal of managing director.

“False news of the disagreement between minister local government and managing director KW&SB are being circulated to malign the MD. He was on medical leave for 10 days by the approval of secretary local government,” he concluded.

KW&SB Managing Director Khalid Mehmood Sheikh was reached out for his comments on the issue but he did not respond despite repeated attempts.