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PM Imran for vertical growth of Karachi

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KARACHI: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday stressed the need for adopting vertical urbanization approach in Karachi in order to provide basic amenities to the people of Pakistan’s financial hub that is home to at least 20 million people.

While announcing a Rs162 billion development package, the prime minister said solution to problems facing the increasing population lies in building a vertical city and his government is considering allowing construction of high-rise buildings.

The prime minister, who was on a two day visit to Karachi, said resources can never be enough to provide basic facilities for a city that is horizontally developed.

The multi-billion package announced by the prime minister is aimed at transforming Karachi by uplifting its transport, water and sewerage infrastructure.

Chairing a meeting of Karachi Transformation Committee here, the prime minister said the package comprised total 18 projects of those 10 related to public transport and seven for water and sewerage.

The premier criticized the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) for neglecting the city and vowed to introduce a master-plan for Karachi.

He also rejected the PPP’s claim that the province was not being provided its due share of funds by the central government and said the Sindh  government received its full share under National Finance Commission (NFC).

The prime minister strongly called for a massive awareness drive for water conservation and cited the models of Australia and England which made great efforts to conserve the natural resource despite receiving sufficient rains.

Imran Khan said the K-4 water supply project for Karachi was a complicated solution and the government could make considerable quantity of water available through conservation.

He said the development projects, under this package, would be executed through public private partnership and BOT basis.

The federal government would also establish a university in Hyderabad, he said.

He said he would keep in constant contact with Sindh Governor Imran Ismail to ensure proper implementation of the said projects.

The prime minister later headed to Ghotki where he addressed a gathering. He lambasted the PPP for launching train march in order to protected the money the party leaders amassed through corruption.

Ghotki visit

Addressing a gathering in Ghotki, the prime minister, whose party is believed to have thin majority in the Parliament, took the opposition parties head on and challenged them to do whatever they are capable of doing against the government.

“I will not spare you. I will let you go if you return the people’s money,”he said while addressing both PPP and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

The prime minister deplored the lack of development in the district which was supplying a huge share of natural gas to Pakistan.

He said the PPP government has been receiving billions of rupees in gas royalty but never cared to spend the money on development projects in Ghotki where over 250 gas wells were situated.

The prime minister also pledged to provide loans to poor families in Sindh.