KARACHI - Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif yesterday vowed to restore peace in Karachi and said the operation against terrorists, extortionists and target killers would continue till its logical conclusion.

Addressing the audience after performing the groundbreaking ceremony of Rs16 billion Green Line bus service, Nawaz Sharif said the situation in Karachi had improved significantly and the days of kidnapping for ransom, target killing, acts of terrorism and street crimes were almost over.

He said kidnapping, extortion, murder and other crimes in the metropolis have decreased to a great extent. "This morning, during a high-level meeting, I said now that crime in Karachi is declining, we have to proceed with a resolve to keep the city free of crime," he added.

"We will not halt the operation until the city of lights begins to shine again. Karachi could have been the best city in South Asia, but we went off track and things kept getting worse. Now we are trying to fix things and need everyone to cooperate," the Premier underlined.

About the groundbreaking of Green Line bus project, the prime minister termed it a historic day as the federal and the provincial government were jointly launching the metro bus service to provide fast and cheap bus service to the hundreds of thousands of people of Karachi.

He said the 18.4km long Green Line would usher in a positive change in the city. He said it would include over 11km long elevated section, with 22 bus stations and would be better than the Lahore Metro service.

Nawaz Sharif said transparency and quality in the project would be ensured and the project would be completed during next year.

The Green Line Bus Rapid Transit system, which would start from Surjani Town and culminate at Municipal Park MA Jinnah Road, will serve to upgrade and decongest the overburdened transport infrastructure of Karachi as well as reducing the cost and travel time for the residents of the metropolis.

After its completion, the corridor is estimated to benefit nearly 300,000 passengers a day. The entire Rs16.08 billion cost of the corridor funding has been provided by the federal government.

The prime minister mentioned that the work on Karachi to Lahore motorway was underway, which he said would connect the distant areas of the country. He said within next few years, Pakistan would be an important country with regard to enhanced connectivity. He said if the momentum of development work continued with same pace, the country would soon witness an era of sustainable prosperity.

He also acknowledged the interest of the chief minister and governor of Sindh in the development projects of Karachi. Governor Sindh Dr Ishrat ul Ebad Khan and Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah also addressed the gathering.

Soon after his arrival Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif chaired a meeting on the overall law and order situation in Sindh, with special focus on Karachi. Besides the above stated persons, the meeting was attended by IG Ghulam Haider Gilani and Federal Information Minister Senator Pervez Rashid.

The prime minister noted with satisfaction that peace in Karachi has been significantly restored and the city was fast regaining its past glory. He lauded the role of Law Enforcement Agencies in securing peace in Karachi and paid tributes to those who sacrificed their precious lives for the sake of peace.

The PM said Karachi operation was started after reaching a consensus among all the stakeholders. It is necessary that the job of Karachi operation is taken to its logical end and terrorism and lawlessness was completely wiped out, the prime minister said.

INP adds: Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah showed disappointment over the length of Green Line Bus Rapid Transit System. He said that Green Line bus project should touch Karachi Sadr.

PM FULFILS CANCER PATIENT'S WISH

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday met a cancer patient Anwarullah Afridi in Karachi to fulfil his most cherished desire.

Warmly meeting with Anwarullah, the Prime Minister inquired about his health and spent some cheerful moments filled with motivation and appreciation.

The PM asked Anwarullah about his family and hobbies. Anwarullah replied with excitement at meeting the Prime Minister and said that his wish comes true after meeting the Prime Minister. Anwarullah shared his feelings with the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister said to Anwarullah Afridi, while praying for his recovery and good health, that you are a source of inspiration and courage for all of us.  The Prime Minister directed for immediate compliance of Anwarullah's request.

The Prime Minister prayed to Almighty Allah for his early recovery and encouraged Anwarullah to stand brave and courageous as God helps those who help themselves. You will defeat the disease, The Prime Minister said to Anwarullah.

Anwarullah shared his experience of foreign visit with the Prime Minister particularly his meeting with Malala. The Prime Minister also asked about his studies.

The Prime Minister said that granting wishes of such children change their lives a great deal. Make A Wish work compels us to exceed the expectations of every wish kid and drives us to ensure that our attention has a far reaching impact, the Prime Minister said. For wish kids, just the act of making their wish come true can give them the courage and strength for fight against the disease as well as remaining optimistic, the Prime Minister stated after meeting Anwarullah Afridi.