KARACHI: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday inaugurated the K-2 power project at the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (Kanupp) during his one-day visit to Karachi.
K-2 power plant, the largest in the country, will generate 1,100MW electricity upon completion.
Nawaz congratulated the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission on the timely start of concrete pouring of K-2 power plant, which will be built by the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC).
Terming the occasion an "important day in Pakistan's history", the prime minister said the project was evidence of cooperation between Pakistan and China in the field of science and technology.
"The construction of K-2 and K-3 power plants will further strengthen the steadfast friendship between the two nations," Nawaz said.
The prime minister thanked the Chinese government, CNNC, and other Chinese organisations for their cooperation in the construction of nuclear power plants.
He said it was a matter of pleasure that with the cooperation of a Chinese company two more nuclear power plants – Chashma-III and IV – would start producing 630MW electricity next year.
The groundbreaking of K-2 and K-3 power plants was performed by the prime minister in November last year.
Know more: PM launches major N-power project
The World Nuclear Association had earlier estimated the cost of the new project at nearly $10 billion.
The project had been in the media spotlight for quite some time with representatives of civil society organisations raising a number of reservations over it, with the chief concern being the close proximity of the project to the city.
Upon his arrival to Karachi, the premier was received by Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad and Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah.
PM Nawaz briefed about Karachi operation
After the inauguration ceremony at Kanupp, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif chaired a high-level meeting of the apex committee to review the city’s law and order situation.
Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, State Minister for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali, Rangers Director General (DG) Major Gen Bilal Akbar, Corps Commander Karachi Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar and other high level officials attended.
During the meeting, the prime minister was briefed the progress of ongoing Karachi operation, which was launched in September 2013 to free the city of criminals and people associated with terrorist outfits.
IG police gave a briefing to the prime minister on the investigation of attack on MQM leader Rashid Godil.
Commenting on the briefing, Nawaz said the CCTV footage of the attack is not clear due to the poor quality of the cameras, hence the attackers could not be identified.
The prime minister said action should be taken against the persons responsible for installing CCTV cameras of poor quality.
IG police informed the premier that the CCTV footage of the attack on Godil had been sent to London for clarification.
DG Rangers also gave a presentation during the meeting. Referencing the impact of improving law and order situation on businesses in Karachi, Major Gen Bilal Akbar said flags and other products worth Rs5 billion were sold on the occasion of Independence day this year while merchandise worth Rs70 billion was sold on Eid.
Major Gen Akbar said it was due to poor prosecution and investigation that courts gave bails to criminals.
"One out of every four criminals is granted bail," he said.
Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah and Governor Ishratul Ibad also briefed the premier about the implementation of decisions taken by the apex committee with regards to Karachi operation.
Following the apex committee meeting, PM Nawaz also addressed representatives of Karachi's Parsi community. The premier informed the gathering about various energy projects that will be implemented to overcome the energy crisis. He also said that the Parsi community is Pakistan's pride and appreciated their efforts for the country.
He also discussed Pakistan's positive economic indicators and decrease in inflation and interest rates. While mentioning Karachi's law and order situation, the premier reiterated that there has been a decrease in extortion, kidnappings and target killings.