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Clifton Cantonment

The Clifton Cantonment is a cantonment town of the city of Karachi, in Sindh, Pakistan. It serves as a military base and residential establishment. It was established by the British Indian Army in 19th century British India, and taken over by the Pakistan Army in 1947. The cantonment maintains its own infrastructure of water supply, electricity and is outside the jurisdiction of City District Government of Karachi. Clifton Cantonment is comprised of I to VIII phases of Defense Housing Authority (DHA), Block 8 & 9 of KDA Sch-5, Katchi Abadis declared as Bazaar Area i.e. Delhi Colony, Madniabad, Punjab Colony, Chandio Village, Bakhshan Village, Ch. Khaliq-uz-Zaman Colony, Pak Jumhoria Colony, Lower Gizri, Hazara Colony (Railway land), P&T Colony, MES Colony, Transit Camp, PNS Haider, PNS Shifa, 494 FWO Engineering Group.

Clifton Cantonment is one of the posh localities of Karachi with huge infra-structure, sprawling shopping centers and decent recreational areas, neat and clean environment. It is predominantly inhabited by civilian populace with only a linear portion towards the North where certain pockets of military establishment exists. Prominent among the military installations are Transit Camp, PNS Shifa, College of Physicians etc. There is also little population of residential units in this area to house the troops of HQs 5 Corps. A 13 k.m. long beach towards Southern proximity where the karachities throng every evening in large number for entertainment. Cantonment Board Clifton and DHA have developed numerous facilities for the residents and general public for their smooth and orderly flow in to its jurisdiction.

Clifton Cantonment is a role model for other civic bodies to emulate. It is self-contained civic body which does not fall back for financial assistance either upon the Federal Govt. or Provincial Govt. The Board is being managed by senior and seasoned bureaucrats headed by Administrator Garrisons where Sta Commander exercises authority over the Boards as a PCB. This arrangement has been made to facilitate the DHA residents as both institutions are complimentary to each other. The arrangement has proved successful and the residents are fully satisfied with the set-up.

Clifton cantonment does not share the traditional history development which goes with the history of establishment of Pakistan Defence Officers Housing Authority (PDOHA) Karachi. PDOHA came into being through a presidential ordinance No.7 of 1980 cantonment board Clifton also emerged concurrently through a notification SRO No.207(1)/(83) dated 27.02.1983 as a sequel to this in order to provide municipal cover to the DHA by bifurcating Karachi Cantt. and amalgamating 13 Katchi Abadis located in the periphery block 8 & 9 of old KDA Scheme-5.

It has an area of 51.327 Sq. km., with a population of approximately 0.25 million persons. The area includes 8 DHA phases, 13 Katchi Abadis prominent being Punjab Colony, Dehli Colony, Hazara Colony, Pak Juamhuria Colony, Bakhshan Village, Chandio Village, Lower Gizri etc. and Block 8&9 of old KDA Scheme-V. The Cantonment has in total 63 boundary pillars. Toward North and West is located Karachi Cantt., towards East lies CDGK jurisdiction and towards Southern proximity is Arabian Sea.

Clifton is a class-I Cantonment where at present a Mini Board comprising of 02 nominated members is functioning under Administrator DHA who is wearing two hats one as an Administrator DHA and another as a president of the Board. However, DHA is complimenting the Board in terms of technical expertise and black up support. There are number of residents association, which are working hand in hand with the authorities of the Board. Monthly meetings of the residents are being held in the Board office regularly in order to redress the problems of the residents. The Board has established its office in Phase-VI of DHA in a purpose built building which is quite sufficient to meet the requirement of time.

A sizeable chunk of residential properties in Cantonment Board Clifton (CBC) and Defense Housing Authority (DHA) are not registered in the name of those with possession. There are some places in the cantonment areas where the administration is not providing a water supply and garbage collection services. The residents manage the water facility by purchasing tankers that cost Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000 each. Likewise, for sweeping and garbage collection, sweepers were hired and a monthly maintenance is contributed.

Defence Officers Housing Authority as the name implies, primarily came into being for the welfare of the serving and retired officers of the Armed Forces of Pakistan. The Housing Society, which made a humble beginning with allotment of a mere 76.2 acres of land has come a long way since. It was through the state of the art development of mostly barren land, meticulous master planning, provision of enviable civic facilities and quality living environments to its residents that DHA has attained a status which serves as a benchmark for quality community living unparalleled to its class.

The Defence Housing Authority, Karachi, also known as the Defence Officers Housing Authority, Karachi, or DHA, Karachi, is the foremost development in Pakistan with many exclusive projects to its credit. The biggest setup of its kind in Asia, today DHA is considered to be the first choice residential area for the affluent of Pakistan.

The Authority came into existence through Presidential Order No.7 of 1980 and was later approved by the National Assembly of Pakistan. The Authority is spread over 8852 acres and provides civic facilities to millions of residents. The efforts to develop DHA have been fruitful, signified by growth oriented high class living values. The housing projects are planned to cover every aspect of healthy living and contain beautiful parks, excellent educational institutions and modern clubs. The organizational matters are well attended by Secretary, Chief Engineer, Directors and a committed and dedicated work force to ensure smooth running of the organization.

DHA and Clifton Cantonment Board (CCB) are responsible for development and maintenance of approximately 18000 acres respectively. 46 percent of area is undeveloped while the remaining 54 percent of area including Clifton locality is high density occupation with total population of approximately 450,000 residents excluding migratory numbers. DHA as a development organization has to transfer developed phases to CCB under DG ML & C. CCB is also the tax collecting agency of developed / handed over sectors. DHA has been undertaking responsibility of refurbishment and improvement of services and utilities infrastructure in developed phases in view of CCB's inability to do the same because of their financial, organizational and capacity deficits. DHA has serious urban development problems in layout of its utility / services infrastructure. Overlap of DHA and CCB functions has further aggravated the problem.

Clifton Cantonment does not share the traditional history of Cantonment in the sub-continent as it is a post independence development, which goes with the history of establishment of Pakistan Defence Officers Housing Authority (PDOHA). Karachi PDOHA came into being through Presidential Ordinance No. 7 of 1980. Cantonment Board Clifton also emerged concurrently through Notification SRO No. 207(1)/(83) dated 27-2-1983 as a sequel to this in order to provide municipal cover to the DHA by bifurcating Karachi Cantt and amalgamating 13 Katchi Abadis located in the periphery and Block 8 & 9 of old KDA Scheme-5. All phases were conceived and developed by Defence Housing Authority (DHA) and then handed over to Cantonment Board Clifton for maintenance purposes.

CCB has a territorial span of 12665.267 acres comprising of DHA Phase I to VIII and Clifton Block 8 & 9 including the adjoining Katchi Abadis. Its population stands at 182,489 as per 1998 Census. Due to negligible average rainfall, provision of storm water drains had not been provided properly for the planning & development of phases. The topographical nomenclature of Cantonment is generally uneven contouring with depressions thus accentuating anti-gravitational lifting of sewerage water. However, the changing rainfall pattern has necessitated the storm water drainage system in the area owing to topographic limitations therefore storm water over-powered the sewerage system as well. In most cases the emergency equipment and energy generators were also submerged. The de silted sewage lines could not be cleared as the Company assigned to do this job had no protective equipment against poisonous gasses for personnel who had to go in for de silting. In some cases sewer waste flowed in to under ground water storage tanks thus posing serious health problems for the residents who are CCB's tax payers. Drinking water was pumped directly to their overhead tanks from bowsers. In some cases even medicine was provided to the residents.

Land in DHA has a level profile without any natural drainage system. DHA is also dependent on drains that emerge from city areas and exit from DHA. DHA's existing facilities of storm water and sewerage with inherent limitation were not designed for rainfalls of peak exceeding 50-60 mm in 24 hours, as evident from historical data. The system was compromised by unprecedented rains of 205 mm in 24 hours in Aug 2007. Frequent power breakages further aggravated the problems where pumping system have to be continuously in operation to ensure anti gravity disposal of storm water and sewerage.

Changing global rainfall pattern was evident in rainfall of year 2006-2007. A total of 100 mm of rainfall in 24 hours during July 2006 created storm disposal problems in Phase-I, II, III, IV & V and Block 8 - 9 of Clifton Cantonment Board. Phase-I was refurbished and the rains of Aug 2007 confirmed efficiency of refurbished system.

Under the directions of Corps Commander 5 Corps, a comprehensive and conscientious development plan was devised to address the sore points of civic inconvenience to the resident.



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