City govt doing mere lip service as residents continue to shift from low lying areas

Nullah Leh continues to swell

Zubair Qureshi

After Friday rains, residents of the garrison city’s low-lying areas particularly those adjacent to Nullah Leh, kept shifting their families to other parts of the city on Saturday. The Met Office has forecast more rains in the days to come. For two consecutive weeks intermittent rains have contributed to swelling of the Nullah Leh as a result the overflowing water entered the areas close by making the residents wonder how long they will have to face the situation. Every year in July-August rainy season brings this challenge for us and our houses, furniture, electric appliances in short everything is affected, said Samina Bibi a mother of four while talking to Pakistan Observer. She is now shifting from Mohanpura to Satellite Town C-Block only to spend the two months of rain and impending disaster. “I think ultimately, we have to sell out our house permanently,” said she adding the government does lip service and photo shoot only instead of doing something real. The rains have played havoc in these areas of the city and Cantonment board localities besides inundating streets and roads in almost every part of Rawalpindi city which exposed inefficiency of the concerned civic bodies about their continuous failure to improve sewerage and drainage system.
Water level touched to almost 17 feet in Nullah Leh in different points while rainwater entered in Benazir Bhutto International Airport (BBIA) and Holy Family Hospital (HFH). The rainwater entered into residents’ houses, shops and submerged various streets. Heavy rain with strong winds prompted authorities to declare a state of emergency in Rawalpindi.
On Friday, these rains accompanied by gushing winds started at 3 a.m. and continued for almost one hour playing disaster in low-lying areas where rainwater overflowed from small channels of Nullah Leh and gushed into houses of people up to the level of 3 to 4 feet level, causing great hardships and nuisance for them.
The localities of Dhok Farman Ali, Rahimabad, Banni, Kohati Bazaar, Gawalmandi, parts of Khayaban-e-Sir Syed, Urdu Bazaar, Dhoke Elahi Bakhsh, Rahimabad, Dhoke Farman Ali, Amar Pura, Dhoke Ratta, Mughalabad, Dhok Khabba, Dhok Hafiz, , Nadeem Colony, Jan Colony, Jehangir Road, Sadiqabad, Arya Mohallah, Muslim Town, Dhoke Chiraghdin, Ganjmandi, Mohanpura and some parts of Asghar Mall Scheme and areas close to the main course of Leh in Amar Chowk, Liaquat Bagh, Shamsabad will badly hit if water level crossed to dangerous level here in Nullah Leh.
Pindi DC Talat Gondal said the situation was completely under control now.

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