Archive for the ‘New Developments’ Category

National Bloggers Conference

Jamal AshiqainYesterday was a milestone achievement for the bloggers of Pakistan as the Information Technology Ministry, Government of Sindh organized the National Bloggers Conference 09. This is the first time in the history of our region that a government has not only recognized the importance of blogging but had also gone a step forward to appreciate and support the bloggers community without attaching any strings to undermine or restrict their right to the freedom of expression.

The conference held at a local hotel here in Karachi started off with great energy and enthusiasm, two of the front tables hosted a number of bloggers who meticulously covered the event live using a live blog applet, tweet feeds, and photo inputs trying not to miss out even the even the slightest bit of the details while battling a number of jittery but yet working wifi connections provided by the organizers.

Em[POWER] Project: Karachi – Needs your Vote to win $50,000


They have recently entered the Dell Social Innovation Competition to hopefully win the Grand prize of $50,000 for Project Karachi. These funds would greatly help with start-up costs for materials and such to help them succeed to bring this bounty for Karachi They need your VOTE

Here are the steps that will help them win!

  1. First, go to this website –
  2. Then, click the Register Now button and make a new account. Be sure that you check the “I agree…” button.
  3. Next, in the “Search Ideas” box type in em[Power] to get to our project.
  4. Once you’re there read the short summary of our goals and please click the Promote Button with the arrow on it to add ten points to our idea

That is the least you can do to support a creative project for Karachi and also Pakistan

Join the effort to rally more votes for Em[POWER] help them spread the word

One step in the right direction

I am happy to report that I just spotted a bus stop in Clifton with ramp access so that people with disabilities can access public transport independently. This bus stop is opposite Park Towers.

It’s a small step but I am so very happy that someone actually gave some consideration to people with disabilities. Kudos to Karachi’s city government for taking another step in the right direction, you made the citizens of Karachi proud.

The bus stop opposite Park Towers

The bus stop opposite Park Towers

A Luxury apartments project in Nazimabad

landmafiaThis post is very much related to, but not a follow up of this article (“rape of the city”, rightly said) by Cowasjee yesterday. It was drafted quite earlier. Its incidental and very interestingly as i am making this post there is a short story on tv about decreasing number of parks/grounds/open spaces in Lahore too. So the issue is all over.

Land mafia, like others, has grown so much in size and power, thanks to “everyone’s” overwhelming support in last 20 years that even our mayor is now saying he is helpless. The image on right is my question today. There is some construction going in full swing there these days . . .  (more…)

CNG Bus project for Karachi

CDGK recently announced (source link lost, apologies) that 50 CNG buses will start operating on different routes from March. Routes include Surjani  – Nazimabad – Tower and Surjani – SF – Tower. This should especially be a relief for those who use these routes daily. It’s a much required effort as public transport is in complete mess and buses already being driven on routes are poor in passenger service. It’s hoped that this time this will not meet the same fate as Green Bus project did. Two main issues are: Drivers not following route/bus-stop and lane and poor bus condition. Cost for overall project is 250 million PKR. Not sure if the CNG bus project listed here on CDGK website is the same one.

Malir River Bridge – In Pictures

Malir River bridge was inaugurated on 4th Feb,2009 by Governor Sindh. The 5km bridge is the longest in Pakistan. It links Korangi to Shah Faisal Colony via Malir River. Here are some pictures for the same. Well done CDGK. Around 43 houses were demolished on the site after payment of compensation to their owners. There was also a park proposed about which we don’t have any latest but if the project is still ON it would be really great.

[Credit : Urbanpk]

Are pakhtuns being targeted?


Lately there have been shady reports coming in from different parts of Karachi that Pakhtun hotels and dhabas are being put out of commission overnight.

There are also reports that Pakhtuns are being systematically sought out and removed from mohajir based areas as the leader of MQM has warned his party of the dangers these people somehow pose. Removal means eviction by landlords, refusal to buy goods from pakhtun businesses and so on

I thought it would be a good idea for us to engage in some citizen journalism and see if this is actually taking place or is more here say to fan the flames of ethnic violence in our city. This can easily be accomplished as most of us live in different areas of Karachi and can report via comments as to what is actually going on while trying to stay away from a political tilt in any direction.

So answer the above poll and tell us why you think this is or is not happening, based on your own locality. Pretty soon we should have a city wide grasp of the ground reality in this matter

Greener Karachi Campaign

Working with the CDGK, Crosby Asset Management is organizing an initiative to plant trees all across the city. The idea is to shed the concrete and dust laden Karachi image to bring out a city that’s cleaner, greener and healthier.

As part of this program, the city govt and Crosby Asset Management will be doing a tree plantation campaign near the City School PAF chapter. Students from the school will also be participating in this plantation drive

Join and lend a hand in helping making Karachi cleaner, greener and healthier.

Date: Nov 16 2008
Time: 1 pm onwards
Location: Opposite City School PAF Chapter.

Mustafa Kamal declared second best world mayor

Karachi’s young and energetic Mustafa Kamal, the mayor is chosen by an award winning American magazine Foreign Policy as 2nd best mayor in the world for year 2008.

From DAWN:
“An award winning American magazine Foreign Policy, has chosen Nazim Karachi, Syed Mustafa Kamal as second among the three best mayors in the world for the year 2008.

The magazine has included the names of Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit and Wang Hongju, Mayor of Chongqing as the other mayors of the moment, said a CDGK statement issued on Sunday.
The magazine said no city globalises on its own, but with shrewd investments and smart urban planning, a mayor can help turn a regional player into a global powerhouse. About Mustafa Kamal the magazine wrote that the mayor of Karachi is an unlikely poster child for innovative urban planning.
It said the 36-year-old Mustafa Kamal governs a city that’s more often in the news for religious violence than cosmopolitan ways. But the hard-charging Kamal is looking to change all that. He’s courting foreign investment, encouraging international ties, and boosting the city’s tourism.
According to the US magazine Kamal is not shy about his goals: He has said he wants to turn Karachi into the next Dubai. His Green Karachi project aims to plant thousands of trees in the city. Kamal is not letting anything stand in the way of his grand plans. He has threatened to arrest anyone who tries to cut down the new saplings, it added.
In a statement, the Nazim said that in the past there was no concept of ownership in Karachi. He said his administration carried out development works on a large scale, but added that lot of work still remains to be done.”

Source :

Where did this open space go ?

Karachi is fast running out of space, mainly grounds, parks etc. and turning into an oven of heat, dust and smoke. Corrupt builders with the help of political masters and gov. officials are eating it like anything. I have been posting for a long time on this unplanned (call it evil planned) development that has no head, no toe and definitely no brain. Last week I went to Saddar and found this open space [ZOOM OUT view ] (that might have been for a ground or park for local population) has disappeared. I heard that empress market is being shifted here. Well if this transfer is done in proper way, fine. Else i see no sense in cleaning EM and making life hell for this locality. The sewerage, water, electricity and other problems that will emanate from this shift will start showing its ugly head in coming years. Anyone, any idea on this?

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