The Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) has claimed to make all the necessary arrangements to cope with the challenges during the coming monsoon season.
Sources informed Pakistan Today that after the directions of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, WASA’s preparations for rainy season are in full swing. The CM had presided a meeting to take a thorough review of the hitherto make arrangements before the rainy season a few days ago.
During the meeting, Sharif expressed indignation over a lack of progress towards the installation of the modern warning system with regard to prior information about weather situation.
WASA Deputy Managing Director (DMD) Asghar Ali Bhalli told Pakistan Today that provincial government had released an amount of Rs 420 million for the preparation to tackle the challenges of monsoon season. He said that there were 13 major disposal points in the cities, whereas 95 other points are present where rainwater will be disposed into the drains.
Asgahr said that WASA has arranged more than100 generators which would be installed at disposal points and lift stations. He said around 72 lift stations would be operating to lift water from the ground.
“Around 23 low lying areas have been identified in the city where machinery have been deployed for prompt drainage of rain water, while 42 suction machines will be deployed in different areas of the city” Asghar said, adding that 250 official will be working in three shifts to keep the system smooth.
Nishat Colony, Shadbagh, Gulshan Ravi, Lakhodair, Bhaati Gate, Mehmood Booti, Outfall Road, Multan Road and Farkhabad are the areas declared as the most dangerous during the monsoon.
He said 35 emergency camps will be operating to deal with any emergency in the city. All camps have been provided with pumping stations, lifting machines and suction machines so that they can work around the clock in the areas of their deployment.
Asghar admitted that ongoing construction work at Orange Line Metro Train (OMT) project is considered to provide a tough time during rain, but WASA has made the strategy to deal with the situation in the areas situated along the construction site. He said among the 35 emergency camps seven are just deployed at Multan Road area near OMT construction site.
“There is no doubt that OMT project has increased the responsibilities of WASA staff” Asghar said.
Asghar said the staff has been put on high alert and WASA will utilise all available resources in the coming season with the collaboration of City District Government Lahore (CDGL) and Lahore Waste Management Company (LWMC). He said to ensure prompt redress, CDGL and LWMC administrations have assured to work in their full capacity alongside WASA.
He claimed that all drains have been desilted under the supervision of WASA XENs and SDOs, while they have directed to keep on monitoring the situation.
It has been observed during many previous years that monsoon rains caused citizens to suffer despite tall claims of the authorities. Every year citizens had been informed that the government has made arrangements to secure them during rain, but rain exposed the efficiency of government.
On the other hand, Met office has announced excessive rains during this monsoon season.