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Sindh CM asks provincial deptts to remain alert for dealing with flood like situation.

KARACHI -- Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah has directed local government and irrigation departments to be alert to face forthcoming flood like situation.

Therefore, the cleanliness work of nalas (sewage drains) and strengthening of embankments of River Indus must be continued on war footings.

This he said while presiding over an emergent meeting here at CM House Monday on cleanliness of nalas and strengthening of embankments of River Indus. The meeting was attended by Senior Minister for Education Nisar Khuhro, Minister Health Jam Mehtab Dahar, Local Government Minister Jam Khan Shoro, Chief Secretary Siddique Memon, and Principal Secretary to CM Alamuddin Bullo, SMBR Rizwan Memon, Secretary Irrigation Zaheer Hyder Shah and various other senior officers.

Chief Mythologists Rasheed briefing the meeting said that about 50 to 55 mm rain was expected in Tharparkar, Umerkot, Badin, Thatta and Karachi on July 12 and 13 but there was no chance of heavy storm.

Minister Local Government Jam Khan Shoro said that there were 30 major nalas in the city, of them six most important nalas were being cleared through heavy machinery. He said that the DMCs of the city have around 520 nalas and they were also cleaning them.

He said that most of the nalas were massively encroached. Giving the examples Mahmoodabad nala he said its 1.5 kilometer was badly encroached where machinery could not be landed or moved. "We have started manual work to clean these portions," he said and added that on Gujjar Nala some 16 choked points were identified and then most of them have been cleared to carry storm water drain.

Shoro said that the work orders for de-silting of four major nalas have been issued. The de-silting of all the nalas at a time was quite difficult. The Gujjar Nala is 14 kilometer long . In the first phase the KMC was working to clear most dumped/choked areas and the after that the excavation would be continued till next six month. "Though it is a temporary work but even then it would cater to the need of next one year," he said.

The CM said that the actual width of the nalas is around 200 ft but they have reduced to eight to 10 feet now but at some points hardly 4 feet width have been left by encroachers. On this Jam Khan Shoro said that 30,000 families were settled along and on the Gujjar Nala. "We will have to bring a major scheme to remove encroachment and line these nalas with cement and concrete so that they cannot be encroached in future," he suggested.

The chief minister made the local government minister and his entire team of KMC and water board and the commissioner Karachi to ensure proper pumping out of rain water in time. "You must hire generators and fix them in low lying areas and start pumping as it starts raining," he directed them.

The chief minister also directed the chief secretary Siddique Memon and Commissioner Karachi Aijaz Ali Khan to coordinate with KE to keep their system, at least at the pumping stations right from Dhabeji to the city, perfect so that water supply to city could be continued during the heavy rains.

It may be noted that the chief minister has already provided Rs160 million to KMC for de-silting of storm water drains.

Secretary irrigation Zaheer Hyder Shah briefing the chief minister said that the River Indus was in low flood these day. The water level at Guddu has reached 325,000 cusecs because the heavy rains on Kohe Suleman. The rain on the mountainous area develops pressure on our river system.

He said that work on nine different vulnerable bunds was in progress from last one month. They are Qadirpur Loope Bund, Qadirpur Shank Bund, Ulra Jagir and Faridabad Bunds at Khairpur, Mud Band at Naushehroferoz, Sujawal and Munarki Bands and Mula Katiar Bunds.

The chief minister said that he has already provided Rs200 million to Irrigation Department for strengthening of weak buds. "But, I am not happy that during the time of low floods breaches developing in the embankments of some canals," he said and directed secretary irrigation to focus on the strengthening and monitoring of the system.

Senior Minister for Education Nisar Khuhro said that there was huge water in River Indus but even then rotation system has been adopted on Rohri Canal and on some other canals. Minister Health Jam Mehtab also supporting Mr Khuhro said that rotation system was adopted when water shortage occurs but in this season of heavy rains and medium floods it was surprising for him.

The chief minister directed the secretary Irrigation to send him detailed report on rotation system and explain why this has been adopted even in the low flood conditions within one week.

The chief minister also said that the poisonous water being released from Punjab has caused serious damage to the lands of Ghotki where water logging and salanity have become serious threat to the agriculture. "I want a detailed report on this issue to discuss in the next cabinet meeting," he said.

Discussing the rehabilitation facilities the DG PDMA Salaman Shah said that he had provided de-watering pumps too every district apart from them other facilities like tents, mosquito nets have also been made available.

Senior Minister Nisar Khuhro said that in case of emergency tent cities may be set up to provide shelter to the flood/rain affected people instead of giving them shelter in the schools. "The temporary settlement in schools causes serious problems like damages to the building, furniture and fixtures," he suggested. The chief minister agreed with the senior minister and directed the PDMA to be ready for such an arrangement, if needed.
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Publication:Balochistan Times (Baluchistan Province, Pakistan)
Date:Jul 12, 2016
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