The community and the government agencies work together as partners. There are two levels of a modern sanitation system:

a)Internal development comprising of:

1-Inside the house - sanitary latrine

2-In the lane - underground sewerage line,

3-Secondary or collector sewerage      

b)External development comprising of:

1-Trunk sewer/ natural nala (drainage channel) development

2-Treatment plant

This remains the responsibility of the government.

linking the lane sewers to secondary sewers.
Internal development undertaken by the people; including that of sanitary latrines inside the house. In the lane.

These internal development components are

maintained by the residents of the settlement



External development:

Above: an open natural nala (drainage channel) in Orangi before...

And after local government had built it as per OPP-RTI designs.

It was a breakthrough in 1992 when the Mayor of Karachi visited the OPP-RTI and the Karachi Municipal Corporation (KMC) accepted the OPP model as its policy. Acceptance by other government agencies like Sindh Katchi Abadi Authority (SKAA) followed.

The KMC-ADB* laid large secondaries and trunk sewers in 12 settlements to support the internal development. During construction, the OPP-RTI and community members monitor and supervise to maintain quality.

* A partnership of the former Karachi Municipal Corporation and Asian Development Bank (KMC-ADB).


Where possible, the OPP-RTI and the government engineers work together to prepare detail design and estimates for the external development. The OPP-RTI facilitates the process of implementation.(refer 30 for developments)


In 1994, the Director General of the Sindh Katchi Abadi Authority (SKAA) accepted the OPP model for Katchi Abadis in Karachi. Likewise work with KMC proceeded outside Orangi.

An open nala in a Karachi settlement before....

And after being developed by SKAA assisted by OPP-RTI as "external development". SKAA's finances are generated through recovery of development cost while providing land tenure. This amount is then used for external development in the settlement.


This compliments peoples self help work on lane sewers.

Trunk sewers laid by the Sindh Katchi Abadi Authority (SKAA).

In a series of works carried out by SKAA, a NOC (No Objection Certificate) was issued by the community organisations and OPP-RTI on completion of work before final payment to contractor.

An activity of youth training has evolved into a process of documentation of the existing infrastructure of a settlement i.e. sewage disposal, water supply, schools, clinics and thallas are marked on maps with information on peoples' and government's work. On the basis of the survey, the external and internal development components are identified. Mapping and documentation of existing infrastructure has provided an important tool for planing and advocacy
All natural nalas in Orangi and Karachi have been documented. A master plan has been developed for Orangi together with a conceptual plan for Karachi. This has been done in order to direct future government work to build on what exists and to work with local resources.OPP-RTI's mapping and documentation of these channels has been the important evidence leading to this policy.In Orangi 85% of the large drainage channels/nalas 71,837 rft Costing Rs.228.212 million are now developed as box trunk as per OPP-RTI design.Work on remaining is in progress.OPP-RTI focus in design has also been to avoid displacement of poor peopls housing located along these channels.

In June 2004, engineers of the Work and Services Department of City District Government, Karachi (CDGK) requested the OPP-RTI support for the development of natural nalas into box trunks and upgradation of existing drains in Karachi. OPP-RTI together with the CDGK engineers is a member of the focal group formed for the work. On request, maps and documentation of many city main nalas/drains are regularly provided to the group.

Design a Estimates of all Orangi nala/drain completed.

Design a Estimates of 65 Karachi nala/drain completed

Design a Estimates of 02 Karachi nala/drain in progress


Consensus with CDGK and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB):

OPP-RTI's proposal for sewerage disposal for karachi is now approved on Nov'2007.The KWSB's S-III plan for the city costing Rs.7.25 billion(about US $ 121 million). The plan has been approved by the provincial and federal Government for its financing.

Meeting with the KWSB site engineers for joint work.

KW&SB has accepted that natural creeks and storm water drains in Karachi are the major sewage disposal points. They have silted up over time and have further been encroached upon largely by the government agencies,the corporate sector,the commercial enterprises,houses /complexes of the rich.Earlier the media,planners and government planned the poor for encroaching on the drains/natural nalas and blocking flows. The eye openers and breakthrus follwing the rains of August 2006, the work and advocacy are in the section on Karachi rains.While latest developments are in the 121 QPR included in later section.

*KW & SB is the government agency responsible for sewerage / water infrastructure development and maintenance, however it only caters to about 30 percent of Karachi, the rest is taken care of by the other government agencies and communities. KW & SB for long was an advocate of mega projects and foreign loans. Refusing to build on what exists, preferring high cost technical solutions, negating low cost gravity flow systems - the nalas/ drainage channels as the main disposals.In 2006 there was a breakthru,KWSB accepted that the nalas were the main disposal for sewage in the city, while also adopting the OPP-RTI proposal for sewage disposal for Karachi. The plan is now in the implementation phase.

In June 2006 on Governors directive first the KW&SB and now since Aug'07 the CDGK has taken charge of O&M of all the nalas/drains of     Karachi.OPP-RTI maps are being used. Maintenance regular desilting and repairs of nala/drains has become CDGK regular activity. A separate deptt. has been setup for this work.


This natural creek having become a nala at Manzoor Colony has a catchment area of over 2 million people, i.e. 1/6th the population of Karachi. The picture shows the nala before it was built into a box sewer. Government Engineers invite tenders and later supervise the work.

The nala during construction into box trunk. This provides for a cleaner, habitable environment. Govt Engineers invite tenders and later supervise the work.Govt engineers invite tenders and later supervise the work.

The existing condition of a nala and settlement is documented and analysed. 111 natural nalas have been documented . Plan, design and estimates for development of total 65 nalas have been provided to KMC/ CDGK * (City District Government, Karachi,KW&SB and SKAA.

The Manzoor Colony drain is now completed. After the successful completion of the Manzoor Colony nala OPP-RTI has provided technical support to CDGK and KW&SB for design of other nalas in Karachi

The OPP-RTI and community activists monitor the work to control quality.

There has been change in the mindset of the City Government and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB), which is now avoiding foreign loans and is building on what exists, (thereby documenting existing sewerage systems - a need constantly advocated). As a result, existing natural drainage channels everywhere are being developed as covered drains / box trunks. Due to this development, large areas of the city, especially poor settlements, mostly located along the drainage channels are benefiting due to improved environment, housing and a three to four fold increase in the value of their property.

In CDGK's and the Sindh (Provincial) Government Development Program 2005 - 2007, a budget of Rs.2.02 billion had been used  for nalas and drains development. This was the first time that such a huge budget had been allocated for such purpose.Lately further Rs.516 million has been approved  by the provincial govt. for 9 main nalas (designed by OPP-RTI) spread over eight towns. Work on site is in 900 progress on four nalas.