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Monsoon Rains kill 95, damages 2807 houses, 388 kms of low-quality roads in Sindh

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KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah in his meeting with Prime Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif through video link from CM House told that him that his province has received 369 percent more rain than normally recorded in the monsoon which killed 93 persons, including 47 children and damaged 2807 completely and destroyed 388 kilometers roads connecting rural areas with the urban.

“The serious situation calls for the support of the federal government to compensate for the losses of lives, infrastructure, crops and houses and the Agriculture bank may be directed to defer recovery of its loans it has advanced to the growers in Sindh.”

The prime minister meeting in Islamabad was attended by the chief ministers, chief secretaries from their respective provinces through video link. Syed Murad Ali Shah briefing the prime minister said that his Province received heavy rainfall in the month of July. The first spell occurred from 2 to 11 July, Second spell from 14-18 July and last spell from 23rd July. 

He added that the rainfall recorded till-to-date was almost 369 percent more than normally recorded in Sindh. He said that Karachi received over all 556 mm rain during these three spells.  Losses and damages: The chief minister talking about the losses and damages said that till-to-date 93 deaths, including 47 children and 59 injured people have been reported across the province. “35 sewerage lines of Karachi Water and Sewerage Board were affected at different locations across city and three bridges in District West and Malir have been affected badly,” he said and added major roads of Karachi such as EBM causeway, crossing causeway and others have been severely affected.

Shah said that approximately 388.5 km of roads connecting different areas of the cities and talukas have also been damaged. He added that various major streets in urban centers like Karachi, Hyderabad, Badin, Sukkur, Thatta, Sujawal and Dadu have been partially damaged. The CM told the prime minister that around 15,547 houses partially and 2,807 fully have been damaged and 89,213 acres of standing crop have been submerged or washed away.

Murad Ali Shah giving details of the relief efforts taken by his government said that 62 Truck Mounted heavy Dewatering Pumps of PDMA were stationed at various districts for immediate dewatering of rainwater. He added that 30 out of 62 pumps were stationed in Karachi, in addition to the already deployed dewatering pumps by various departments. Mr Shah said that as of now, 6280 Tents, 17,675 Mosquito Nets, 20 boats with OBM, 3,280 Jerry cans, and other relief items, including folding beds, pillows, bed sheets, life jackets have been provided to the rain affected families. He said that 300 ration bags have been provided to District Jamshoro.

In addition, cooked food and drinkable water was also being provided to the rain affectees wherever needed. Anticipated Issues:

Murad Ali Shah said that Balochistan was likely to receive more rains for another week, which would further aggravate the existing situation of Hub Dam and adjoining areas of Karachi. He added that the excessive rains at Khirthar range might result in further increase of in-flow of water in Kamber Shahdadkot, Dadu and Jamshoro Districts. 

Giving details of the flood situation at Guddu, the CM said that in the River Indus at Guddu is currently flowing at 283.4 (thousands of cusecs) which was at low flood level. “However, in next 24 hours the level is expected to raise from 290 to 340 (thousands of Cusecs),” he said and added further in-flow of water beyond 400 (thousands of cusecs) would require evacuation of population residing in Katcha areas. The CM requested premier that the funds recovered from Bahria Town may be provided to the Sindh government for construction of nullas and other important uplift works. The prime minister assured the chief minister that he would help him in handing over the money recovered from M/s Bahria Town.

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Sindh Food Authority inks MoAs with ICCBS to ensure safe, hygienic, healthy food

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KARACHI: Sindh Food Authority (SFA), Government of Sindh, has signed two Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), University of Karachi.

Sindh Food Authority signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with Halal Certification Testing and Research Services (HCTRS) and the Industrial Analytical Center (IAC), ICCBS, University of Karachi.

This MoA aims to create a long-term framework of collaboration, cooperation, and development of a strong linkage between SFA and the research centers of the ICCBS for the testing of food products, which is in the interest of both institutions.

The SFA Director General Agha Fakhar Hussain and Prof. Dr. Farzana Shaheen, the Director of the ICCBS, University of Karachi, signed the agreement in a meeting held at the HEJ, Research Institute of Chemistry, University of Karachi on Friday evening.

Among others who attended the meeting were officials from SFA Prof. Dr. Asad Sayyed, Dr. Naveed Bhutto, Dr. Seema, Danish Arshad, and officials from ICCBS, including Prof. Dr. Abid Ali, Prof. Dr. Syed Ghulam Musharraf, Prof. Dr. Shabana Simjee, Prof. Dr. Asmat Salim, Dr. Imran Malik, Dr. Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan, Dr. Shakil Ahmed, Jawaid Riaz, and others.

In his talk, the SFA Director-General praised the efforts made by the ICCBS administration to make this agreement possible in the interest of Sindh province. He also praised the industrial support and national services of the International Center (ICCBS).

He said the authority’s goal was to guarantee that the people of Sindh were fed in a safe, hygienic, and healthy manner by standards.

I want to have strong relations between SFA and the ICCBS, University of Karachi, he said, adding that SFA is trying to make all possible efforts to provide better food items to the people of Sindh.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Farzana Shaheen congratulated the officials of the SFA and ICCBS on the signing of the agreement. She hoped that this agreement would further strengthen the University’s HCTRS and IAC in the province.

Halal Testing Laboratory works to standardize and uplift the high-quality standard of nutrition & hygiene in Halal-certified food & other products by international export quality standards, she said.

Talking about IAC, the director said that IAC was doing their best to meet customer’s testing requirements with integrity, reliability, accuracy, precision of data, and timeliness of reports to achieve customer satisfaction and define specifications in compliance with ISO/IEC Laboratory Accreditation System and ISO 9001Quality Management System.

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DG Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar disburses certificates

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KARACHI: Director General of the Sindh Food Authority Agha Fakhar Hussain distributed certificates among the participants at the HEJ, University of Karachi.

The certificates were given away to the participants of the highly prestigious Training Programme over Halal Food and Meat Detection Methods Training and Inter-laboratory Comparison for Organisation of Islamic cooperation (OIC) countries (2022-SMIC-006) held at Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in hybrid format on October 23, 2023. The certificate were signed by the SMIIC General Secretary.  

Prof. Dr. Syed Ghulam Musharraf (Tamgha-e- Imtiaz) and Prof. Dr. Farzana Sheen attended the event.

The SMIIC (Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries) is an intergovernmental and one of the 17 affiliated organizations of the OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation). Its primary focus is on standardization and metrology technical elements.

Pakistani candidates participated through online sessions. The participants were selected through a detailed procedure and tests.

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Sindh Food Authority appoints Dr Rashida Irtifaq as its Ambassador

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KARACHI: The Sindh Food Authority (SFA) is to appoint prominent educationist Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq Ali as Honorary Senior Food Safety and Hygiene Ambassador.

In light of this significant appointment, a ceremony has been scheduled for January 9, 2024 at Jinnah Auditorium Dr AQ Khan Institute of Bio-Technology and Genetic Engineering, University of Karachi.

Caretaker Chief Minister Sindh Justice (R) Maqbool Baqar, Secretary Food, Government of Sindh and other dignitaries will attend the event to support the vision of the Sindh Food Authority.

Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq Ali has been an integral part of Karachi University for the past fifty years where she not only fulfilled her teaching responsibilities but also played a pivotal role in establishing the Department of Food Sciences and Technology.

At the age of 85, Dr Rashida Ali continues to serve in academia and the industry, demonstrating an unparalleled commitment to education.

While talking to Sindhnews, Sindh Food Authority’s Director General Agha Fakhar Hussain said that the food authority had recognized contributions of Professor Dr Rashida Irtifaq by appointing her as the Honorary Senior Food Safety and Hygiene Ambassador, a position that reflects her expertise and dedication to the field.

The appointment of Dr Rashida Irtifaq will not only acknowledge her achievements but will also provide an opportunity to raise awareness among university students about the principles of health preservation related to food consumption.

In the event, Dr Rashida Irtifaq will also be presented with a shield by the Sindh Food Authority as a token of appreciation for her outstanding contributions, says Agha Fakhar.

The Sindh Food Authority was established in April 2018 under the SFA Act 2016 and the Authority has been established Under Section-3 (1) of the Act ibid with the mandate to provide safe, hygienic and health food to the people of Sindh, he adds.

The Authority is performing its functions accordingly as per the Sindh Food Authority Act 2016 but the major hurdle is the lack of awareness among general masses and food handlers at large, regarding the food safety and hygiene principles.

The authority’s mandate to provide safe, healthy and hygienic food to the people of Sindh can not only be achieved witht eh coercive measures but it requires general awareness campaign among the masses and food handlers and the issue demands the participation of all segments of the society, the DG concluded.

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