KARACHI       -       In the backdrop of the recent meeting between Sindh Governor Imran Ismail and the Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah a day ago and assurance from Centre of supporting Sindh uplift projects, the chief minister on Friday chaired a meeting to expedite transport projects in the capital of Sindh province.

He directed transport department to complete Orange Line project within next four months and get ready for tendering for Red Line for which he wanted to perform groundbreaking ceremony on August 14.

He issued these directives while presiding over a meeting to review the progress of BRTS, Orange Line and Red Line at CM House. The meeting was attended by Minister Transport Awais Qadir Shah, Transport Minister Nasir Shah, Advisor to CM Murtaza Wahab, Acting chief Secretary Mohammad Waseem, PSCM Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Local Govt Roshan Shaikh, Secretary Law Shariq, Secretary Transport Abbas Detho, MD PPP Unit Khalid Shaikh and others.

Minister Transport Awais Shah briefing the chief minister said that the ongoing work on Orange Line was almost at final stage. AT this the chief minister directed him to complete it within next three month and meanwhile adopt the procedure of procurement of buses, initially with a fleet of 25. “I want best buses be procured whether they may have the sitting capacity of 40 passengers and 80 standing passengers or more long buses with double capacity,” he said and directed Minister Transport to work out final proposals.

He also advised the transport minister to talk to the Green Line project management/federal government so that buses of similar look and identical capacity could be purchased.

The chief minister said that he has already approved Rs962 million for construction of underpass and mezzanine floor at Numaish. The finance department has referred the matter to the sub-committee of the cabinet which would submit its report to release the amount.  To a question, the chief minister was told that the land for Green Line Bus depot at Surjani Town has been transferred in the name of the project. The local government department would issue notification by Monday.

The chief minister directed Transport department to complete work on Orange Line so that within next three to four months it could be launched. He directed Minister transport to start procurement procedure for the buses and initially 25 buses may be procured for Orange Line.

The chief minister directed Transport to department to enter into Facilitation & Implementation Agreement with Green Line project management. The project would be operated by the federal government for three years and then it would be transferred to Sindh government for continuation of its operation. The chief minister directed transport department to make arrangements for shifting of Truck stand from Maripur to Northern Bye-pass and get a 100-acre of land transferred from BOR for construction of inter-city bus terminal at Super Highway.

The matter of land acquisition for Bio-Gas plant at Bhains Colony under Karachi Bus Rapid Transit, Red Line installation at Bhains Colony also came under discussion. The chief minister said that the Bio-Gas plant at Bhains Colony would be most feasible because using of cattle dung for the generation of bio-gas would be easier there.

Minister Local Government Syed Nasir Shah said that the land belonged to KMC and he would talk to mayor Karachi and get a piece of 40-acres allocated for an important City project, Red Line Bio-gas plant.

The chief minister was informed that the tender document for Red Line project was ready and would be floated within a month. However, advertisement has been released for appointment of a Supervision Consultant for the project. The chief minister told the transport department that he would perform groundbreaking ceremony of Red Line project on August 14, 2020. “Therefore, the transport department has to expedite all the pending works accordingly,” he said and added “the actual service to the people of Karachi will be resolution of transport issues by launching state of art BRT,” be concluded.