Shattered civic infrastructure of Karachi awaits new mayor: Altaf

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Pasban Democratic Party (PDP) Chairman Altaf Shakoor has said that shattered civic infrastructure of the megacity Karachi awaits new mayor.

He said public transport, especially second phase of Green Line, dug up University Road for Red Line, KCR, K-4, inadequate healthcare and educational facilities, etc., are the problems that need urgent focus.

He said three main parties are in contest for the megacity mayor slot. He said it is a good sign that the megacity voters of now more politically aware. He said in fact our multilingual and multicultural Karachi needs an open-minded and accommodative politics.

He said multicultural demography is the beauty of the megacity and strongest deterrent to the ethnic chauvinists who want to divide the province of Sindh. He said different communities with colorful linguistic and cultural backgrounds live in Karachi peacefully for a long time and this diversity has successfully foiled the evil designs of ethnic chauvinists to divide Sindh on ethnic lines.

He said an open-hearted political approach is the need of hour. He said due to diversified linguistic demography a separate Karachi province is not feasible. He said the solution to the issues of Karachi is megacity system.

He said in Pakistan there are two megacities, Karachi and Lahore, but there is no constitutional provision for a megacity government system. He urged the political parties in parliament to table a bill for amendment in the constitution of Pakistan to pave way for the megacity government system.

He said under the proposed megacity system, Karachi would collect its local taxes and revenues and make its separate budget generating its own revenue. He said all departments of Karachi including police would be run under the megacity goverance. He said Karachi needs its own administrative, financial and governance style to deal with its peculiar issues that could not to resolved under present local government law.

He urged all political stakeholders of Karachi to ink a ‘Karachi Charter’ for joining hands under a broad based manner to achieve progress and prosperity of the megacity. He said this proposed platform may be headed by different member parties on rotation basis. He said his party is ready to take an initiative in this regard.

Altaf Shakoor said Karachi does not need more divide-and-rule. It needs a politics of unity, brotherhood and tolerance. He said the lingering issues of joblessness, public transport, water supply and drainage, education and healthcare, peace and law and order could only be resolved under a reconciliatory politics under the umbrella of Karachi Charter with the method of megacity government system. He hoped that political leaders would go for generous approach to join hands in the larger interests of the megacity.

He said all political parties and civil society should prepare a wish list regarding progress and prosperity of Karachi and point out which ongoing projects need early completion and which new projects should be initiated by the new mayor.