(Karachi P.R. 4th January, 2018) Ghazanfar Bilour, President, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry has appealed Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah to chalk out plan for availability of water in Karachi in light of directions of the Supreme Court of Pakistan at the earliest so that unrest created among builders and developers could be pacified and construction sector could flourish for the best of benefits of national economy.
In a statement on Thursday here, he said that the construction industry is considered backbone of the economy but the successive governments have never paid full attention towards this important sector of the economy, which is the second largest job provider after agriculture and contributing a lot to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) besides providing shelters to the people.
He said that the Supreme Court of Pakistan has banned construction of high-rises in Karachi due to false report of the Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KW&SB). Buildings do not consume water; water is consumed by people whether they will reside in a multi-story building or in a hut, he said adding now the Supreme Court has given directions to the Chief Minister to present a viable water plan for the Karachi so that the ban imposed by the Apex court could be revisited. He said that the ban on construction of high-rise and multi-story buildings in Karachi will not only be detrimental for builders and developers but more than 70 allied industries will also be badly affected.
He appealed the Chief Minister to unveil water plan for the megacity at the earliest to save investments of more than Rs 900 billion and thousands of jobs. He also appealed to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to intervene in this matter and help Sindh government in this regard for the promotion of the construction industry and boosting the national economy.
He said that Master Plan department was created to keep a watch on the working of the Sindh Building Control Authority but this department has been put under the SBCA, which is like putting a watchman under the control of a thief.
Citing a report he informed that people are living in 60 percent area of Karachi while 40 percent areas of the city are inhabited and out of those 60 percent 58 percent areas are Katchi Abadis. Only 2 percents of Karachi have high-rises and multi-story buildings which is too low for a megacity like Karachi.
He said that builders and developers are paying billions of rupees on account of development charges but not enough money is being spent on the development of infrastructure of the city. He lamented that the ban on construction of high-rise and multi-story buildings in Karachi will affect people from the lower strata of the society and they will never be able to have their dream houses.