THE government has been trying to make Lahore a ‘new Paris’ by making more and more underpasses, flyovers, roads and other infrastructure. Have the planners ever thought about the issues faced by the public on a daily basis? People’s lives are affected by such ‘development’.
In June, the extension of Kalma Chowk underpass got completed and just as
the people had heaved a sigh of relief, there began the construction of Cavalry Ground underpass in September, creating innumerable issues for one and all; students, employees, teachers and labourers.
The ongoing construction has turned people’s once smooth commute into a bumpy ride on the unpaved road. People have to take recourse to long alternative routes every day to continue their professional, educational and routine life. Public transport has also been stopped on such routes, for there are no roads at all.
Moreover, people pay huge amount of money to travel to their destinations owing to such disturbances in the city.
I am a student, but due to increase in fuel prices, my daily travel expenses have increased manifold. The waste of time and energy is another factor as it takes about an additional hour to travel to reach my institution every single day.
We are constantly told that Pakistan is on the verge of bankruptcy, and we are forced to take money from inter-national lending institutions as well as from friendly countries.
If that is correct — and that is, indeed, correct — what is the need for such development in a city like Lahore, which, by any standard, is already more developed than many other cities in the country?
Published in Dawn, November 11th, 2023