Karachi’s mega projects have taken over parks in Nazimabad.
People can’t visit the children’s park in Nazimabad No 2 or the Jeffco playground in Nazimabad Block L because it’s full of construction material. Both amenity plots are being used to store the Sindh Infrastructure Development Company Limited’s crushing plants, machinery, and concrete.
Residents aren’t happy. They say they have been deprived of their recreational sites and an environmental hazard has been created.
Teenager Muhammad Owais said he used to play cricket at the Jeffco ground three years ago, but now he has nowhere to play his favourite sport because the ground has become a dumpsite.
Locals say they have been developing skin and sinus problems because of the dust produced by the crushing plants.
District Central Chairman Rehan Hashmi told SAMAA Digital that he has written to the SIDCL to have the park vacated. “I have received several complaints from people, which compelled me to write a letter to the authorities.”
The construction of megaprojects, such as the Green Line BRT system and flyovers at Sahki Hasan Chowrangi, KDA Chowrangi, and Five Star Chowrangi, has been completed in District Central but the authorities haven’t removed their crushing plants.
“The SIDCL is using the children’s park as its feeding point for the construction work of the Green Line bus project, which is being continued at Numaish Chowrangi. Construction material is being transported from here to the Numaish Chowrangi,” explained Hashmi.
Why are they still using the amenity spots in District Central for their depots, despite the fact that the construction work is over in the district, he asked. “I will get the recreational sites of District Central back for the people and will continue to raise my voice for them,” he added.
SIDCL Chief Executive Officer Muhammad Sauleh Farooqui promised that the construction material will be removed by the end of January or start of February. The contractor is responsible for restoring the playground before vacating them.