Born on 31st August 1958 Managing Director Karachi Water & Sewerage Board Mr. Misbahuddin Farid graduated from N.E.D University of Engineering Karachi in 1982, Mr. Misbahuddin Farid joined Karachi Water & Sewerage Board as a professional civil engineer in 1987, with handful exposure in different aspects of engineering in several cities of Sindh, Pakistan while working with National Constructions and China Geo Exploration & Water-well Engineering Company from 1982-1987.
He was initially inducted in KWSB as Assistant Executive Engineer and today he is acknowledged as an intellectual and Bulk Water Supply infrastructure and maintenance expert. Speaking to TNT’s Saad B. Murtaza on the World Water Day 2013 he discussed some of the problems KW&SB is facing:
Where does Karachi Water & Sewerage Board stand on World Water Day 2013?
Allhumdulilah, we are actively participating in not just the World Water Day 2013 but almost all the Water Conservation related events. Our goal here in Karachi is to raise awareness towards the scarcity of this precious commodity and ensure swift provision of water supply and sewage facilities to more than 20 million citizens of Karachi. Unfortunately, what most of us don’t realize or are unaware of is the fact that Potable water necessary for human consumption is only 3 percent of the total water that exists on the planet. Now out of this mere 3 percent only 1 percent is available to us through Rivers, Lakes and Wells. While 2 percent exists in the form of ice and glaciers. Our goal is to provide the citizens with facilities and the same time increase awareness towards water scarcity. We have recently signed MoU with N.E.D University and in past couple of years with International Agency as well for the betterment of infrastructure and supply to the citizens.
What is the current awareness and water supply scenario in Karachi?
Karachi is under supplied at the moment, we are currently supplying 650 million gallons of water to the citizens of Karachi right now where as the demand is reaching 1500 million gallons per day. We have demanded additional supply from Indus but unfortunately it has not been approved to the sufficient level. We are also working on other water supply projects such as Reverse Osmosis plants at Ramzan Village, revival of Dumlottee wells but without the citizens properly conserving water the supply only increases lavishly making it even more difficult when most of the citizens do not pay their bills. I am hopeful that with the completion of up-coming K-IV water supply project we would be able to stabilize the supply to some extent.
What is the current bill payment situation in Karachi?
I feel really sorry to say this since I was also born in Karachi but unfortunately only a handful of the citizens pay their bills. Although our bills are very low and we strive to accommodate all the citizens equally but due to non-payment consumers who pay their bills regularly were suffering. Therefore, we decided to formulate a Defaulter Revenue Generation Cell and serve on bill payment basis. Now our policy is “better the bill payment average from an area better the services.”
What is K-IV Project?
Greater Karachi Water Supply project K-IV is a bulk water supply project to be completed in three years adding 260 Million Gallons per day additional water supply to Karachi. It would not only improve the water supply conditions but would also help industries and economic need of the city. The project would draw water from Indus sources and bring it to the citizens of Karachi covering a distance of over 200 kilometers. The project would be laid away from existing K-II, K-III and GK lines to make them more safe and secure from natural disasters.
What steps have been taken toward raising awareness?
In the past we launched an awareness campaign targeted at all levels from schools to households. We distributed stickers to students and citizens of Karachi but the dilemma of the situation is our illiteracy rate due to which most of our population is not aware of the weather shifts and changes due to Global Warming. Look around ourselves and we would find that we waste hundreds of gallons every day while we are washing clothes, watering our precious gardens or just let our tanks over flow on the streets. We are still striving hard to take all measures we can to increase awareness but in the current situation where we are already facing economic crises due to low recovery rate it is not possible to launch another awareness campaign.
What is your message for the citizens of Karachi on World Water Day 2013?
In one line I would say “Save water for water is life”. I would request them all that before you waste this precious gift you should keep in mind our Moral and Religious duties. We should realize that one person can make a difference. Let us all take an oath on this day that we will do our part in this cause and fulfill our duties. We will not waste water at home, at our offices and even at mosques. We would not only ensure that we do not waste water but would also motivate others. And keep in mind that even Allah would not only hold us accountable for wasting a precious gift but would also punish us on wasting this precious commodity vital for human existence today and for the generations to come.