• Water utility to approach CM for grant of fund on urgent basis, says mayor
• Board approves hiring on four top posts

KARACHI: The board of the Karachi Water and Sewerage Corporation (KWSC) on Tuesday approved a Rs12 billion project for construction of a new canal to supply water to the metropolis from Hub Dam and rehabilitation of the existing canal.

Mayor Murtaza Wahab, who is also the chairman of the KWSC board, told a press conference that 200 million gallons of water per day (MGD) could be provided to the city from the dam after the completion of the project in 12 months.

Around 100 MGD water is being supplied to district West from the Hub Dam through the existing the Hub canal, which has been in dilapidated condition and develops cracks frequently, especially during the wet season when the dam is overflowed.

The mayor said: “This water project would double the supply of water from the Hub Dam, benefitting residents of districts West, Central, Keamari and South, and other areas of the city.”

He said that the estimated cost for the construction of a new canal and restoration of the existing one was Rs12bn, adding that the new canal would built at a cost of Rs9.8bn.

He said that the water utility board held the meeting on Tuesday morning, and a letter would be sent to the chief minister on Wednesday (today) seeking approval of the project on emergency basis.

He hoped that the Pakistan Peoples Party-led provincial government would approve the project on an emergency basis.

“Steps have been taken and the city government and the provincial government are both on the same page instead of crying for power,” he said.

The mayor said that the provincial government was making serious efforts to resolve the issue of water shortage in parts of the city and had already sent Rs77bn Augmentation Project, a component of the K-IV project, to the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec). He said that the project was approved, but its authorisation was to be issued.

Barrister Wahab said that the water shortage in the city would come to an end after the completion of the Hub Canal project and K-IV.

The mayor said that the heavy traffic should be allowed on the Lyari Expressway. He said that the Malir Expressway would also be completed by next July. “In this way, two expressways will be available for heavy traffic in the city, which will improve the flow of traffic in the inner parts of the city,” he said.

Meanwhile, KWSC Chief Executive Officer Syed Salahuddin Ahmed told Dawn that the 13-member KWSC Board, in its fourth meeting, also discussed the agenda of reforms in the water utility.

He said that the board approved the appointments of board’s secretary, chief human resource officer, deputy chief officer of information technology and deputy chief financial officer.

Published in Dawn, May 8th, 2024

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