Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani has conceded that 148 million gallons daily (MGD) – up to 30 per cent of the water being supplied to Karachi – is either pilfered or lost due to leakages in the supply system.
The admission from Ghani came during a conversation with journalists on Wednesday as he along with officials of the Karachi Water and Sewerage Board inspected repair work being carried out by the water board in Clifton’s Block 7.
According to the minister, the city has been facing a 50 per cent water supply shortage and the provincial government has initiated a number of projects to overcome this. Ghani said KWSB officials have been directed to work on an emergency basis to plug the leakages in the supply system and to prevent the menace of water theft from the bulk supply lines.
To ensure supply to different localities on a just basis, the minister said he has ordered water utility’s officials to impose the “Closure system” so that water is supplied to residential areas that have remained dry (without water supply) for a prolonged period, lasting up to a month.
He explained that his directives regarding the imposition of the closure system didn’t mean to stop water supply to the areas already receiving pipelined water on a regular basis but it was meant to ensure justified distribution of whatever quantity of bulk water was being supplied to the city.
The local government minister added that the entire country had been facing a severe water shortage so it would be utterly unwise to completely rely on the single source of Indus River to meet Karachi’s needs. The option of desalination of seawater had to be fully explored to effectively overcome shortage, he said, adding
The Sindh government had already started working on the feasibility to install a desalination plant somewhere on the Karachi coast.
Ghani further said that he come to Clifton Block 7 to personally supervise the repair and maintenance work on pipelines to ensure potable water is provided to residents through the pipelined network of the KWSB.
He said that issue of sewage being mixed with potable water being supplied to Clifton Block 7 would be resolved in the coming 24 hours as the area’s broken water pipeline would be repaired during this time.
(This news/article originally appeared in The News on August 30th, 2018)