The Green Line Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) is a 35km long under-construction bus network which will extend from Karachi City railway station to Surjani Town.
The project’s construction workers went on a strike and the construction work between Numaish Chowrangi and Nazimabad Chowrangi has halted. Reportedly, the workers are protesting because they have not been paid their dues since four months.
The deadlines have already passed for the completion of the project and the first phase – the network between Surjani Town and Numaish Chowrangi – might not complete by its targeted deadline of April.
Fairly, the workers have protested for their unpaid salaries. According to their demands, they will continue working only after their dues are fully paid.
The contractor assigned for the project is CRFG-MATRA COM and is responsible for the staff’s salary and has failed to pay it since the past four months. The workers have been on a strike since Saturday and the work has been suspended since then.
The protesting workers had salaries between Rs. 13,000 and Rs. 15,000. The company’s office was vacant while the unpaid workers were protesting outside the office holding posters and chanting slogans against the company.
Left with no choice, the workers pleaded to the Sindh government for justice – they demanded security for their job and their unpaid salaries to be remunerated. This Tuesday, the workers were assured that they will get paid in a two days time but the workers said that they will continue protesting until their salaries are paid.
The company responsible for the entire project, Karachi Infrastructure Development Company Limited’s (KIDCL) representative, Uzma Paracha said that the wages had been paid to the contractors assigned to each section, these contractors were supposed to deliver the wages to their workers. According to her, the construction work at the site between Nazimabad Chowrangi and Gurumandir has stopped while the work on other sites is currently in progress.
Hoping that the staffers start working again, the work will continue this Tuesday. The work on the area between Numaish Chowrangi and Surjani Town is expected to complete by April if the work continues smoothly with no further delays.