KARACHI has been made bereft of basic amenities and no action has been taken in this regard. The condition of the National Highway is one such example where massive expanses of the road are broken and have not been repaired for almost a year. Whether it is rain or the malfunctioning drainage system, nothing is ever repaired. To make things worse, the traffic flow mostly consists of heavy vehicles which only make the conditions of the road worse.
Needless to say, the pathetic condition of the roads only makes things worse for the citizens. Firstly, there is traffic congestion every day without fail. This of course causes a loss of time for every traveller and raises the level of frustration of regular commuters. There is also a high rate of road accidents. A striking smell and stagnant water make the entire area prone to health issues for the travellers and those living in the adjoining areas. To make things worse, due to regular congestion, there is an increase in the crime rate since the traffic is heavy and there is an absence of street lights, which is extremely hazardous for commuters. The sewerage system is really old and is hardly functional, which is further deteriorating the condition of the road.
The Landhi Association of Trade and Industry has made several appeals to the government to highlight the plight of the industries, their employees and the residents of Landhi Industrial Area. Landhi has one of the largest populations of various companies and factories in Pakistan which play an important role in the development and progress of the country. Solutions for the issues of the area will benefit the business sector and, at the same time, facilitate growth. Reconstructing National Highway will develop the industrial sector and will encourage further investment. It will also curtail the crime rate and give a sense of security to the people living and commuting in the area.
It was sheer embarrassment for the nation when the former Director of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for Pakistan, Marc Andre Franche visited Karachi and was appalled by the pathetic condition of the Highways. He was of the opinion that if Karachi is to progress and maintain its position as the hub of business, the basic public utilities need to be fixed on an immediate basis or else it would become impossible to conduct business in Karachi.
The city contributes approximately 60 per cent of Pakistan’s total tax revenues. The Sindh government is well aware of Karachi’s contribution but it is shocking that the industries in Landhi and adjoining areas are completely ignored and taken for granted. The problem is getting worse by the day and is not given due attention. The city’s business sector is immensely affected and the situation is getting worse.
The government must answer simple questions like why is the contribution of the industries ignored and why are their employees not facilitated? It is disappointing to know that even though the government is aware of the situation of the road and its grave impact on the productivity of the industrial area, which affects the GDP, nothing has been done to alleviate the problems.