KARACHI: Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar has assured the Sindh government that the federal government will extend all possible cooperation to allay its reservations on the issue of islands.
He was talking to newsmen in Karachi after inaugurating the development project of GL-16 at Numaish Chowrangi Underpass along with Governor Sindh Imran Ismail.
Asad Umar also laid the foundation of GL-20 project under which 108 kilometres common corridor will be constructed at a cost of Rs2.2 billion. The project will be completed in 2022.
He said that progress has been made on all four projects of the federal government, including Karachi Circular Railway (KCR), under Karachi package, details of which will be presented before Prime Minister Imran Khan soon.
“We want to find a permanent solution to maintain cleanliness of the main nullahs [of Karachi]. It is important to remove encroachments from nullahs, besides providing an alternative plan. The work for removal of encroachments from nullah is continued in Karachi’s Mehmoodabad.”
Asad Umar recalled that the provincial government had announced the allocation of Rs700 billion funds for the metropolis. He questioned the government for not spending the funds on the development of Karachi.
While highlighting the federal government’s efforts for Sindh citizens, he said that the deserving families have been provided assistance through a relief package worth Rs200 billion. “The federal government allocated funds worth millions for the retrieval of illegally grabbed land in Sindh and to provide relief to the affectees despite it was the responsibility of the provincial government. It is now the responsibility of the Sindh government to retrieve the land while the Centre is ready to spend money, he added.”
To a question regarding islands, the federal minister said that talks are underway with the provincial government to resolve the issue.
Regarding the KCR project, Asad Umar said that the restoration work of the project has commenced.
Speaking on the occasion, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail said that the revenue from islands will be given to the Sindh government and that $50 billion investment is expected for the islands. He said that the government has completed a project and laid the foundation stone of another project which would be completed with the cost of Rs2.25 billion.
He announced that the Green Line Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) project will be inaugurated between July and September next year, adding that the development work on different projects of the federal government is continued and a consultant was hired for the K-IV project. He said that other lines would be made operational in Karachi after the commencement of Green Line.
Imran Ismail said that PM Imran Khan thinks about Karachi and meetings are held every week to discuss its projects. He reiterated that the Centre will address the reservations of the Sindh government regarding its islands.
Commenting over the Kashmore incident, Ismail said that it was a horrible crime and praised the performance of the police department where an assistant sub-inspector (ASI) and his daughter risked their lives to recover the abducted minor girl.
He said that the PM appreciated the ASI’s bravery and it will definitely increase the morale of the Sindh police. The governor said that the criminals involved in minor rapes will not be given punishment less than death sentence soon.