Karachi: While Karachiites completely disregarded the directives of the Sindh government by sacrificing animals wherever they wished to during Eid Al Adha, residents in the most expensive and posh neighbourhood of the city were no exception, The majority of them also performed rituals wherever they wanted to.
For the first time, the Sindh Government had designated 500 sites for the sacrificing of animals in view of the direction from the National Command and Operation Centre to steer the nationwide strategy against the coronavirus pandemic. Designating proper sites was the first time the government stepped in to regulate Eid Al Adha rituals. But, officials didn’t make any effort to ensure the people followed the law.
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The situation was the same at the Defence Housing Authority (DHA) Karachi, the most expensive area of the city situated alongside the coastal belt of Clifton, as its residents didn’t abide by the direction of the municipal authority, Cantonment Board Clifton, either. The CBC had made elaborate arrangements to motivate DHA residents to sacrifice animals only at designated sites of which there were 18 proper camps in total across the neighbourhood. Notices were issued to residents that on this Eid Al Adha they would not be allowed to sacrifice animals on an individual basis outside their residences. Had they followed the law, it would have allowed the municipal agency of the area to carry out the waste disposal work in an easier manner.
Being in the jurisdiction of a cantonment area, the municipal system in place to manage the DHA area has been much better as compared to the rest of Karachi with a proper mechanism in place for waste collection, development, and maintenance of the amenities including several parks. In return the DHA residents have to abide by the cantonment’s stringent municipal system especially in the affairs related to construction of their houses as elsewhere in the city unregulated residential buildings pose a serious risk to their residents.
The DHA neighbourhood comprises of around 70,000 housing units spread over eight phases. As its residents mostly disregarded the direction of the cantonment officials, less than 700 animals were brought to the 18 camps established in the area for sacrificing the animals in a regulated manner on the first two days of Eid Al Adha. As a result, officials had to undertake an extensive drive to clean the neighbourhood as around 3,200 tonnes of animal waste was removed from different parts of the locality.
Aziz Suharwardy, Vice-President of CBC, while acknowledging the situation that the DHA residents mostly didn’t abide by the cantonment’s direction, said that the situation this time was different as several inhabitants of the area utilized the online “Qurbani” (sacrificing) services to book sacrificial animals through web-based service providers with the option of direct home delivery of meat in view of the COVID-19 emergency.
Asad Kizilbash, who is a senior office-bearer of one of the main associations representing the DHA residents, said that their association in the past had run proper campaigns to motivate people of the neighbourhood to sacrifice animals in a disciplined and regulated manner but to no avail as they generally didn’t pay heed to such an advice or direction.
Meanwhile, the spokesman for Sindh government Barrister Murtaza Wahab said on Tuesday that around 61,000 tonnes of animal waste had been collected and disposed of from all over Karachi during the three days of Eid Al Adha till August 3.
The animal waste puts an extra burden on the already inefficient waste disposal system of the city creating various municipal issues. The storm water drains in the city are choked with unattended municipal waste. In an unprecedented move, Frontier Works Organization, the top civil engineering institution of the Pakistan Army, has been called in to clear choked drains of the city to save it from urban flooding during the monsoon season.