KARACHI, Aug 2: City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal has held non-functioning drainage system of KPT underpass responsible for the accumulation of rainwater.
“The KPT underpass is still incomplete as there is no system of water drainage there and its pumps have yet to start functioning which created problems and rainwater accumulated there could not be flushed out," the nazim said while informally talking to newsmen at his office on Wednesday.
Mr Kamal observed that problems would not be solved promptly and efficiently unless the city was governed by a single institution.
He said that the city government was right now engaged in relief activities and its teams were also working in areas that did not lie in jurisdictions of the city government, including airport, FTC Bridge, Empress Market and Saddar Market where its six fire brigade vehicles and eight pumps were draining out rainwater.
He told reporters that eight places of flow of drainage at Bath Island had been closed and he himself got them cleared. He made it clear that no commercial centre or office in the city had been closed due to heavy downpour.
The nazim said that the city government had already cleaned and desilted storm-water drains, therefore, less rainwater was accumulated roads and traffic jams were also not seen as compared to those during 2003 rains.
Mr Kamal said the city had no proper drainage system, but after assuming charge of city nazim he set a policy that no road would be built without construction of drain along it, which would benefit citizens in future.
Citing example of Abul Hasan Ispahani Road, New M.A. Jinnah Road and Garden Road, he claimed that not a single drop of rainwater was accumulated on these arteries as they had been reconstructed by the present city district government of Karachi.
About choking of sewerage lines during the rains, he said that due to 20-hour-long power cut sewerage pumping stations stopped functioning which had created the problem. It was the sewerage water that accumulated on roads and underpasses, he claimed.
The nazim was confident that the city government had worked very well as, he said, it had chalked out rain emergency plan three months earlier.
“Except I.I. Chundrigar Road and Clifton, no place in the city faced major problem (due to heavy rains), but we are making efforts so that rains could become blessing for Karachiites", he claimed.
In a reply to a question, he said that filling of potholes developed on the city roads had started and over 100 vehicles were engaged in the work.
Meanwhile, the chief fire officer of city government on Wednesday said that the city government was not responsible for accumulation of rainwater in the KPT underpass.
He said that the rainwater accumulated there due to lack of KPT pumping facilities. He pointed out that the city government staff worked on emergency basis and drained out rainwater from the KPT underpass.
According to a statement issued by the city government on Wednesday, the staff worked tirelessly and pumped out accumulated rainwater from the Schon Circle, Teen Talwar Chowrangi, Bath Island and adjoining areas on the night between Tuesday and Wednesday.—PPI