Ahmed Rafay Alam, the vocal lawyer and urban expert, with a sane and informed voice, left a comment here that needs to be posted for wider reading:
The water we see and experience isn’t because there aren’t any sewers. It’s because there isn’t any storm water drainage.
The low-lying areas of north Lahore were never set out according to plan. The few planned localities (chah miran, do moria area and Shadbagh) have sanitation. But the storm water of the area was meant to be absorbed. But if the natural vegetation of an area is given up to roads and other developments, then storm water has no place to go. Except stand there and make everyone look silly.
In the “posh” part of town, like Gulberg, there was water because the storm water drainage of the area (which was designed in the 1950s and 60s) has been gradually given way to street widening. There is no way to get the water that stands on Main Boulevard after a strong rain except to dig and built a storm water drain.
It’s remarkable that none of the locally elected officials of the area weren’t present. Mian Amer – who made a point of doing the knees-in-water routine – hasn’t been seen anywhere for quite a while.
I understand Shahbaz wants to get things done, but is it really the job of the CM to be fixing drains in North Lahore. What I mean to say is that the CM’s involvement is at the expense of the local administration. If they aren’t there, their capacity will never increase and we’ll never figure out a way to solve this problem.