Havoc in Karachi

THERE was clear forecast and warning by Pakistan Meteorological Department about the impending disaster in Karachi but still the mayhem caused by incessant rains conveyed an impression as if the city has been caught in a sudden trouble. About sixteen precious lives were lost and almost entire civic life was paralysed following unprecedented rains, which saw all relevant agencies and departments in action to mitigate woes of the citizens.
The worst type of urban flooding in Karachi has many lessons for Karachiites as well as provincial and federal governments. It showed that the city was ill-planned and the whole system of drainage was just a castle of sand as the entire city submerged into deep water causing loss of lives, disruption of services, suspension of all types of movement and damage to personal, domestic and commercial properties. The situation became worst due to nullahs and drains that are encroached upon and full of solid waste that is there for months if not years. Breach in carryover dam in Gadap Town that submerged large swaths of Super Highway and National Highway also added to the miseries of the people. There would also be health issues as collapse of the sewerage system means it would take weeks to restore some semblance of sanitation and the problem would aggravate on the occasion of Eidul Azha when thousands of animals are slaughtered and proper disposal of ovals would become yet another challenge. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has ordered all institutions including Army to take part in rescue and relief activities but a long-term solution should also be found with input from experts and all stakeholders.

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