DHA and Clifton remain waterlogged, powerless 5 days after record-breaking monsoon spell
The suffering of scores of Karachiites saw no end on Monday as parts of the city remained waterlogged and without power, an agonising five days after record-breaking rainfall caused widespread devastation in the metropolis.
Frustrated by the lack of action by departments concerned, residents of DHA and Clifton gathered outside the Clifton Cantonment Board (CBC) office to protest against the post-rain situation in the two localities.
Approximately 100 protesters demanded that the drainage system in the areas be improved and roads to be repaired and made from scratch. They also demanded an audit of funds collected in the name of flood relief and called for the board to ensure clean-up work.
Many also took to social media to vent their frustration about the power outages which have lasted more than 90 hours in some parts of the metropolis.ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER AD
Sindh government spokesman Murtaza Wahab said that the provincial government had placed its machines at Khayaban-e-Muhafiz and Khayaban-e-Shujaat to drain out the rainwater from Bukhari Commercial.
“We are facing difficulties with the drains at DHA but are trying our best,” he said. In a separate statement, he added that the Sindh government had deployed more machines to help drain the rainwater in DHA.
’95pc of city re-energised’
In a statement, K-Electric (KE) said its field teams and operational staff were working round the clock to restore power to areas still plagued by waterlogging and drainage issues.
“Despite hurdles and impediments to restoration work because of standing rainwater in several parts of DHA and Clifton, KE has been able to re-energise more than 95 per cent of the city.”
The company added that efforts were underway to re-energise five feeders in DHA and Clifton, adding that waterlogging around substations and inside residential premises was proving to be a hurdle, creating a public safety hazard.
“These feeders serve Bukhari Commercial Area, Ittehad Commercial area, Khayaban-e-Shahbaz and parts of 26th street,” the statement said.
“KE’s field teams continue to face challenges because of waterlogging in parts of DHA Phase-VIII (Khayaban-e-Qasim, Roomi), Saba Avenue off Khayaban-e-Muhafiz till Khayaban-e-Ittehad, Bukhari Commercial, Sehar Commercial, Nishat Commercial, Ittehad Commercial, Shahbaz Commercial and Rahat Commercial.”
The power utility reiterated that they had also received “several requests” by residents to refrain from powering up feeders in the “interest of saving human lives”.
“The power utility is totally cognisant of the difficulties being faced by consumers and apologises for the extended outage and would like to highlight that power restoration efforts are entirely dependent on the drainage of water,” the statement said, adding that KE expected to restore power at a feeder level within the next six to 12 hours before proceeding to address localised faults.
Meanwhile, lawyer and activist Jibran Nasir, along with a team of volunteers, took to the streets during the early hours of the morning to drain rainwater still accumulated in parts of DHA and Clifton.
“After six hours, our team cleaned all the sewage sludge from KPT Underpass, Clifton before the morning rush hour to make all lanes operational to facilitate commuters on Monday morning,” he said in a tweet on Monday.
“We are now focusing all efforts on Bukhari Commercial which has been reduced to a lake.”
Later, in a video update on Facebook, Nasir said work was underway to drain the water in Bukhari Commercial.
“If there were 60 to 70 tankers working, you could expect things to normalise within 12 hours,” he said, adding that six tankers were currently working on draining the rainwater.
“There is rainwater as far as the eye can see,” he said, showing the situation in the area. Nasir also appealed to organisations and citizens to join clean-up efforts to help those affected.
“Nothing will be achieved by just making noise and complaining. If CBC and DHA wanted to do something, they would have done it on the first day.”
He maintained that if departments concerned worked efficiently, citizens would not be forced to take such “desperate measures”.