PDMA Sindh urges mitigation measures for expected 2024 floods

Imdad Hussain Siddiqui, Director Operations, Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) Sindh, called upon all District Disaster Management Authorities (DDMAs) to ensure comprehensive mitigation measures for the upcoming 2024 flood and heavy rain season.

During his speech at workshop, Siddiqui emphasized the critical need for proactive steps to protect lives and infrastructure. He stated, “It is imperative that all DDMAs across Sindh implement robust mitigation strategies to minimize the impact of floods and heavy rains. Ensuring the safety and well-being of our communities is our foremost priority.”

The Director (Operations) highlighted that early preparedness and effective response mechanisms are essential to address the anticipated weather challenges. In this context, PDMA, in collaboration with IOM and UNOCHA, has initiated the MSRNA Training under the Information Management and Assessment Preparedness program.

This training aims to equip PDMA and DDMA staff, along with local NGOs from various districts, with the necessary skills to enhance disaster preparedness and response. The workshop was a great success, with participation from all thirty DDMAs and good representation from INGOs/National NGOs.

He emphasized the critical need for proactive steps to protect lives and infrastructure. He stated, “It is imperative that all DDMAs across Sindh implement robust mitigation strategies to minimize the impact of floods and heavy rains. Ensuring the safety and well-being of our communities is our foremost priority.” The Director (Operations) highlighted that early preparedness and effective response mechanisms are essential to address the anticipated weather challenges.

In this context, PDMA, in collaboration with IOM and UNOCHA, has initiated the MSRNA Training under the Information Management and Assessment Preparedness program. This training aims to equip PDMA and DDMA staff, along with local NGOs from various districts, with the necessary skills to enhance disaster preparedness and response. The workshop was a great success, with participation from all thirty DDMAs and good representation from INGOs/National NGOs.

Warm weather prevails across Sindh

The Met Office today forecast temperatures as high as 50 Celsius in Sukkur and Dadu in Sindh amid the heatwave boiling several districts of the country

Most of the districts in Sindh would have extremely hot weather while the coastal region of the province will remain hot and humid. The mercury could soar to 38 to 39 Celsius in Karachi, while maximum temperature in Hyderabad, the second largest city of Sindh, could remain between 44 to 46 degree Celsius.

Sukkur and Dadu districts would have temperatures as high as 50 Celsius, while maximum temperature in Mithi and Nawabshah will remain between 46 to 48 degree Celsius.

Most of the plains in Punjab would experience extreme heat with daytime temperature in Lahore could reach as high as 45 degree Celsius. Maximum temperature in Multan could soar between 45 to 47 Celsius and and 44 to 46 Celsius in central Punjab districts of Sargodha and Faisalabad.

The mercury could hit maximum 41 degree Celsius in Rawalpindi, while hot and dry weather has been predicted for Murree, Galliyat and adjoining areas and most of the plain districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Rainfall has been predicted for Chitral, Dir and Kohistan districts of KP with wind/thunderstorm. In Balochistan, Sibi will be the hottest district with maximum temperature between 47 to 49 Celsius.

Temperatures in provincial capital city of Quetta will be between 34 to 36 Celsius.

The climate change ministry recently said that about 26 districts in the country were boiling under a severe heatwave, with the current spell of sizzling temperature likely to last until May 30.

The temperature is expected to hit 50 Celsius (122 Fahrenheit) in at least two cities in the southern province of Sindh.

Naval Chief calls on Punjab CM Maryam in Lahore

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Naveed Ashraf called on Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz in Lahore on Friday.

Rear Admiral Rizwan Ahmed, Rear Admiral Hamad Ahmed and Commodore Sajid were also present in the meeting. Issues relating to social services of Pakistan Navy were discussed during the meeting.

On the occasion, Maryam Nawaz said, “We value the valuable services of Pakistan Navy and the soldiers of Pakistan Navy who defend the maritime borders are admirable.”

Punjab Chief Secretary Zahid Akhtar Zaman and Principal Secretary to CM Sajid Zafar were also present in the meeting.

Water tariff doubled for Lahore consumers

The Punjab Housing Department has recommended to massively hike the monthly water tariff for consumers in Lahoreon Friday.

As per details, the housing department has submitted proposals to the provincial government to increase the water rates.

According to the notification, it is recommended to charge Rs718 per month from 3 to 5 marla houses which were previously paying Rs375.

The water tariff for 5 to 7 marla houses will be Rs938 instead of Rs564. Recommendations to collect Rs1,383 from 7 to 10 marla houses and Rs1,603 from 10 to 15 marla houses.

Moreover, the water tariff for 15 to 20 marla houses has been increased to Rs2,183. Keeping in view the water tariff proposals, the Resource Mobilization Committee also forwarded the recommendations to the government.

The Punjab government will take a final decision on these recommendations.

K-Electric seeks Rs 10.69 per unit hike in basic power tariff

K-Electric on Friday sought an increase of Rs 10.69 per unit in the basic power tariff, seeking to fix the tariff at Rs 44.69 per unit.

As per details, currently, K-Electric’s average basic tariff is Rs 34 per unit. The company has requested a hike under the 7-year Multi-Year Tariff (MYT) framework.

The EPP component is requested to be fixed at Rs 18.88 per unit, while transmission charges and distribution charges are requested to be Rs 3.48 per unit and Rs 3.84 per unit, respectively.

Operation and maintenance charges are requested to be fixed at Rs 0.42 per unit, and retail margin is requested to be Rs 0.59 per unit. Additionally, K-Electric has requested recovery of lost allocation of Rs 2.88 per unit and working capital of Rs 2.07 per unit.

NEPRA has sought input from stakeholders on K-Electric’s request within 7 days, and a decision is expected soon. If approved, the new tariff will likely affect millions of electricity consumers in Karachi and surrounding areas.

Last month, K-Electric sought a whopping Rs18.86/ unit hike in the power tariff on account of monthly Fuel charge adjustments (FCA) of seven months in an application to the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA).

The sole power provider of the port city has requested to lower the power tariff for two months by Rs0.29/unit.

In a separate development, it emerged that the federal government has finalised a plan to privatize profit-making power distribution companies (Discos).

The power companies include Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO), Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO), Gujranwala Electric Power Company (GEPCO), Multan Electric Power Company (MEPCO) and Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO).

Journalist Nasrullah Gadani succumbs to wounds in Karachi

Local journalist Nasrullah Gadani, who was seriously injured in a gun attack a few days ago, succumbed to his wounds at a hospital in Karachi on Friday morning.

Gadani suffered serious gunshot wounds in an attack by unidentified assailants near Mirpur Mathelo, Ghotki district, on Tuesday.

The incident took place when Nasrullah Gadani was going from his home to Mirpur Mathelo Press Club. Armed men in a car opened fire at the journalist at Jarwar Road near Deen Shah and fled from the scene.

Nasrullah Gadani sustained bullet wounds and was carried to Mirpur Mathelo DHQ hospital for medical attendance. He was later shifted to Sheikh Zayed Medical College Hospital, Rahim Yar Khan, for surgery. Gadani was shifted to Aga Khan Hospital in Karachi on Wednesday.

However, he breathed his last on Friday morning.

According to local journalists Gadani, who worked for the Sindhi newspaper and also disseminated his news reports through social media, was known for being a bold journalist for his reports against local feudal lords and political personalities, waderas and government officers.

The journalists’ community has expressed sorrow and grief over the death of Nasrullah Gadani.

Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Murad Ali Shah also expressed deep sorrow and grief over the death of Mirpur Mathelo based journalist Nasrullah Gadani.

The CM said that the Sindh government shifted Nasrullah from Rahim Yar Khan to Karachi by air ambulance but he could not survive.

“I am deeply in grief and sorrow along with Nasrullah’s family and media organisation he is affiliated”, CM added.

Summer vacations announced in KP schools

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Department today announced summer vacations in schools across the province.

According to the notification, primary schools in the province will be closed from June 1st, while middle, high, and higher secondary schools will be closed from June 15th to August 31st.

In the upper districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, schools will be closed from July 1st to August 31st. Earlier, the Sindh Education Department also announced summer holidays in all private and public sector schools, colleges.

According to the notification issued here, summer holidays in all public and private institutions in Sindh will be observed from June 1 to July 31. Prior to this, the Punjab government announced early summer holidays for all public and private schools due to the prevailing heatwave.

According to a notification, all government and private schools in Punjab will be closed from May 25 till August 15. It is pertinent to mention here that the climate change ministry stated that about 26 districts across Pakistan were boiling under a severe heatwave as of Thursday, with the current spell of sizzling temperature likely to last until May 30.

The temperature is expected to hit 50 Celsius (122 Fahrenheit) in at least two cities in the southern province of Sindh on Friday, which has already delayed week annual school exams due to the blistering heat.