Islamabad  -The situation turned tense at Karachi Company Markaz here on Wednesday when local police tried to stop Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) workers from taking out a rally against scarcity of potable water in the city.

However, the opposition party decided to stage a brief sit-in against persistent water shortage in the capital.

The rally was planned to be taken out from Karachi Company Markaz up to the CDA headquarters in Sector G-7 at 1pm.

PTI leaders alleged that police uprooted their protest camps. A standoff continued for hours before PTI’s MNA from Islamabad, Asad Umar addressing the media where he lamented the government’s attitude viz-a-viz protest by the opposition parties.

A large number of PTI workers including women participated in the protest.

Talking to media at Karachi Company Markaz, the starting point for the protest rally, Asad said that his party raised voice for the rights of residents who are facing acute water shortage since long.

He was of the view that there was no system for sufficient water supply to the residents, especially in the rural areas.

He said state minister for CADD himself admitted shortage of water in the city and that water tankers and tube-wells were out-of-order since long.

He said opposition leader in MCI, Ali Awan will contact the mayor office to ask about the steps he has taken so far to meet the water demand of the residents.

Earlier, Minister of State for CADD, Tariq Fazal Chaudhary addressing a press conference said that PTI is trying to exploit the situation. He was of the view that PTI was practicing negative politics. He, however, admitted shortage of potable water in the city.

“The city is facing shortage of water but the authority has planned a strategy to meet the shortage,” he said. He assured that the authority is going to improve the supply by making out-of-order tube-wells functional. He said 30 water tankers are also available for supply in emergency cases. He added common citizen is getting affected by the negative politics of PTI.

Earlier, PTI members in the MCI lodged their protest against water shortage by displaying placards. They chanted slogans against the authorities before staging a walkout from the meeting. Ali Awan said the residents of Islamabad were getting contaminated water and falling ill.

The MCI meeting was held with Mayor Islamabad and Chairman CDA in the chair. Speaking on the occasion, the mayor said that all options are being explored to overcome water shortage in the city.

“In order to overcome water shortage in the capital city, planning of the project of supplying water from Ghazi Brotha is at advance stage. This project will permanently resolve the complaints regarding water shortage in the city, he assured.

The mayor said that the federal government has released non-development budget amounting to Rs 1.25 billion which will significantly improve working of the MCI. In order to improve conditions of the parks of the city, the mayor said that MCI is ensuring practical participation of residents in the journey of development and in this context a programme ‘Own a Park’ has been launched aimed to ensure community participation in development process.

The session also approved the minutes of 10th session. The house also passed a resolution for recruiting local people in Directorate of Health Services.