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Friday, May 24, 2024

Political Storm Brews as Karachi Grapples with Rain Chaos

Karachi grapples with rain chaos as PPP faces political backlash, with opposition leaders critiquing governance, meteorological challenges, and annual urban flooding incidents.

The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), under Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari’s leadership, is under fire from political rivals as Karachi, Sindh’s capital, faces severe traffic jams and power outages due to unprecedented winter rains. Controlling Sindh, including Karachi, for 15 years, the PPP’s response to the recent challenges has drawn criticism from opposing leaders.

Major thoroughfares turned into waterlogged chaos, prompting political figures like Shehbaz Sharif and MQM-P’s Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui to express concern and accuse the PPP of neglecting Karachi’s welfare. The recent rainfall exposed the city’s vulnerabilities, sparking a heated political debate over governance and preparedness.

Shehbaz Sharif, President of PML-N, likened Karachi to an “ocean” and challenged Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari to a comparison, suggesting withdrawal if Lahore faced a similar situation. Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui accused the PPP of prioritizing its interests, criticizing Mayor Murtaza Wahab and highlighting the perceived failures during the rains. Hafiz Naeemur Rehman of Jamaat-e-Islami blamed the mayor’s poor performance and challenged the PPP’s claims of transforming Karachi into Paris.

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The critique intensifies as rival leaders question the PPP’s governance and ability to handle weather-related challenges in one of Pakistan’s most populous cities.

Karachi witnessed widespread rains, with dramatic scenes of flooded roads and power outages affecting 700 electricity feeders. The Pakistan Meteorological Department predicted heavy rains across the city, recording significant precipitation in various areas. Mayor Murtaza Wahab urged residents to limit movement, emphasizing active efforts to clear major roads.

Despite rescue teams assisting the public and no reported building collapses, concerns rise as Karachi grapples with the aftermath of heavy rainfall, evoking memories of the devastating floods in the summer of 2022.

Urban flooding, traffic jams, and power outages plague Karachi annually during heavy rains, causing fatalities from drowning and electrocution. The recent rainfall resulted in submerged roads, collapsed roofs, and electrocution incidents. The Meteorological Department forecasts intermittent rain, keeping the city on alert.

As Karachi faces another weather-related crisis, questions loom over the city’s infrastructure, governance, and the ongoing political storm surrounding the PPP’s leadership.