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Karachi, Hyderabad, two other Sindh cities declared calamity-hit areas

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Pedestrians and motorists cross the main flooded I. I. Chundrigar Road is located in central business district of Karachi on August 28, 2020, after heavy monsoon rains triggered floods.-AFP

The Sindh government has declared Karachi, Hyderabad, Mirpurkhas and Shaheed Benazirabad as calamity-hit areas after five spells of heavy rains played havoc in the province claiming 80 lives and damaging public and private property.

Sindh government spokesperson Murtaza Wahab posted the notification on Twitter and said, “Sindh government has declared 20 districts of Sindh to be calamity affected under the Sindh Calamities Act of 1958.”

The Sindh government in the “exercise of the powers vested under Section 3 of the Sindh National Calamities (Prevention & Relief) Act-1958” declared 20 districts as "Calamity Affected Areas" because the “heavy rainfalls during Monsoon season have caused [a] loss of human life and property” in the province.

Survey ordered to determine losses

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has released Rs5 million to each deputy commissioner of Karachi, Hyderabad and Mirpurkhas divisions for relief operations and ordered to conduct a survey to assess losses.

A statement issued after the chief minister presided over a meeting to review the post-rainfall situation in all the districts here at the CM House said.

The CM directed the P&D and revenue boards to conduct a survey of the damages caused to the infrastructure, homes and crops so that rehabilitation of road network could be undertaken immediately and compensation could be awarded for the damaged houses.

The meeting was attended by Minister Revenue Makhdoom Mahboob, Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Chairman P&D M Waseem, SMBR Qazi Shahid Parvez, PSCM Sajid Jamal Abro, Commissioner Karachi Sohail Rajput and all the deputy commissioners of Karachi.

The divisional commissioners of other divisions of the province attended the meeting through video link.

CM Shah said that the heavy rains have damaged the road network in Karachi, therefore just after the next spell, the repair work must be started.

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“I have directed all the deputy commissioners of the city to conduct a survey of the damaged road, nallas, streets and gutters and submit the same to chairman P&D for necessary estimates and approval so that work could be started,” he said.

The chief minister was told that almost all the main arteries of the city have been cleared, except the streets, villages and localities established along the embankments of Gujar Nalla, Malir River and Sukkun River.

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Power breakdown

The commissioner informed the meeting that the K-Electric has 1900 feeders in the city, of them 1730 have been restored and 170 were yet to be restored.

The chief minister also inquired about the problems faced by the residents of Defence Housing Authority. He was told that most of the streets were inundated and the KE does not restore electricity in the area where water is stagnant.

Later, Murad Ali Shah also visited the offices of KE and Clifton Cantonment Board to look into the issues pertaining to power outrages and dewatering of the areas falling under the cantonment board.

During a briefing at the KE head office, the chief minister expressed anger over the prolonged breakdown in the city. "What kind of service is this that power remains absent for 30-35 hours?" he asked the KE Chief Executive Officer Moonis Alvi.

He said that the entire Karachi has been declared disaster-struck after various neighbourhoods across the city's six districts had been surveyed.

Shah said experts from the irrigation department and officials from municipal corporations have been dispatched to DHA to drain out areas still waterlogged.

Sharing an update following Shah's visit, Wahab said the chief minister has directed the immediate restoration of electricity and drainage of water from DHA areas.

"Commissioner Karachi has been directed to provide all possible assistance to DHA," he added.


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