BAHAWALPUR: The Parks and Horticulture Authority (PHA) has started renovation of the age-old fountain at a cost of Rs2 million.
The fountain is one of the monuments as it was gifted by Queen Victoria to the late Nawab Sadiq of Bahawalpur. The queen had gifted a pair of the fountains and the Nawab had installed one of them at his Sadiqgarh Palace and gave the other to the then municipal committee, Bahawalpur for its installation in city’s central location of Bahawalpur-Ahmedpur East intersection.
He used to pass through this central place while travelling to his Sadiqgarh Palace at Dera Nawab Sahib from the then small city of Bahawalpur.
PHA Director General Asif Hayat Lodhi told Dawn that the execution of the fountain’s renovation was part of PHA’s beautification plan of the city. He said besides other works, the old floor and railings of the fountain would be replaced with beautiful tiles.
He said the diameter of the roundabout of the fountain had also been reduced to ease the flow of vehicular traffic around it to facilitate the motorists.
Among other measures for the beautification of the city, Mr Lodhi said city’s entrance and exit points in addition to the dual carriageways were also being decorated with the cooperation of an NGO. He said the PHA had limited financial resources and was short of government funds but the NGO was supporting it in its beautification efforts.
He said the government’s annual grant was only Rs47 million against the PHA expenditure of Rs92 million only for its establishment while there were also huge expenses of PHA’s vehicular fleet meant for the maintenance of its parks, grounds and flowering on the dual roads of the city.
According to a decision at the government level, all government departments were bound to pay one per cent of their budgets to the PHA to carry out its plans regarding the promotion of plantation campaign in accordance with the prime minister’s vision of green and clean Pakistan but they (departments) did not abide by the decision, he said.
Published in Dawn, October 27th, 2020