KARACHI - Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said he is committed to completing the Karachi Bulk Water Supply Scheme (K-IV Project).

Presiding over a meeting, which reviewed work on the project, Shah said he was working hard to arrange funds and waiting for the Nespak report on design verifications.

The meeting was attended by Minister for Local Government Saeed Ghani, Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Secretary for Local Government Khalid Hyder Shah, Special Secretary for Local Government Niaz Soomro, MD of Water Board Asadullah Khan and Project Director of K-IV Project Asad Zamin.

The chief minister was told that K-IV was planned to provide 660 MDG (1200) cusecs of water to Karachi in three phases. Phase-I will supply 260 MGD to Karachi, Phase-II 260 MGD and phase-III 130 MGD and the project will be completed by 2022-26.

The project’s Phase-I contract was awarded to FWO in 2016 for Rs28.187 billion and it had to be completed in packages within a period of 24 months. The package-A of civil work was signed for Rs15.254 billion and package-B of electrical and mechanical works was signed for Rs12.9 billion.

The K-IV is basically a three-phased scheme of channels or conduits (conveyance system) to carry water from Keenjhar Lake to Karachi.

In 2015-16 it was realised that even if K-IV phase-I project was competed, it would not benefit people of the city because there would not be enough electricity to pump and supply water. This means there was no connectivity of bulk channel to the distribution network. Moreover, more than 120km conveyance system was being laid passing through a variable terrain as well as highway. There was no provision of bridges and culverts, etc. and minimum colonies for the personnel. Therefore, the Sindh government decided ancillary and supplementary components. They are K-IV road and pedestrian bridges, staff colonies, fencing workshop etc. Under Augmentation plan included to connect three filter of K-IV project with existing Bulk Water Supply system of KWSB through three augmentation pipelines, one at Pipri, other one at NEK and third one at COD at a cost of Rs18.679 billion.

The third component was the installation of 50 MW power plant to operate two pumping stations of K-IV. This would be installed on PPP mode.

The chief minister was also told that the FWO has proposed construction of 650 MGD Conveyance System on current alignment of on-going 260 MGD Conveyance system as one time activity instead of three separate canals in three phases. According to FWO this would result in long-term cost savings and construction of second and third phase would be difficult due to blasting issues. This required massive increase in the cost and scope and delay in time. Therefore, the provincial cabinet in its meeting in February 2019 decided to conduct third party review through M/s Nespak to vet the existing design and hydraulic model of proposed 650 MGD, as well as confirm availability of additional water before moving case for revision of PC-I. 

The chief minister said that 70 percent civil work has been completed, therefore necessary request may be made to M/s Nespak to expedite third party review so that project could be completed.

Mr Shah said that K-I, II and III were completed in a long period of 20 years, now this has also taken a long time if the time of its first PC-I approval in 2014 was taken but work on the project was started in 2016. “We are committed with people of Karachi and Inshallah the project would be completed by removing all bottlenecks,” he vowed.