Gul Bahao in a statement has reported that a delegation of about thirty Nazims and Naib Nazims from all over Sindh visited its head office in Gulshan-e-Iqbal. They included people from Shikarpur, Hyderabad, Jacobabad, Tharparkar, Khairpurmirs, Jamshoro, Nausheroferoz, Badin, Dadu and Larkana.The delegation was lead by Mr Allahudin Mashori under the auspices of MTRI Pakistan (Municipal Training and Research Institute located in Clifton).
The participants were first taken on a round of the Gul Bahao camp which included the garbage collection point which is slowly being developed into what is being called the Safai Kamai bank. There after the participants were ushered into a room called Chandi Ghar, an innovation of Gul Bahao. This was used by Nargis Latif for her hour long talk. Nargis said that many people had visited Gul Bahao’s premises in the past. Among these included:
- German Counselor, Mr Detlef Quester.
- Mrs Almithra Patel from the supreme court of India.
- A twenty five member delegation from Quetta.
- Students of Architecture from Daud and N.E.D University.
- B.B.C, Zee T.V,Star Plus and several local channels like Aaj T.V, Indus T.V,P.T.V, Sindh T.V, ARY Digital.
- WWF and representatives of several other N.G.O’s
Nargis Latif told the participants that Gul Bahao is planning for the establishment of a Gul Bahao complex which will have three components. One will be the Safai Kamai bank which has been the practical and commercial aspect of Gul Bahao so far and which will be a futuristic version of Kabaris. The second component she said will be a pre-fabricated housing plant called Chandi Ghar. She related to the audience that the Chandi Ghar has been recognized as a construction company by many well known quarters.
The third important component of the complex will be a research center on waste management where all the on going research of Gul Bahao will be conserved and put on record and where research students will have access to the previous and on going projects of Gul Bahao. She said she has approached several philanthropists,bankers and well known personalities of the city of Karachi for her project. She said her campaign revolves around Karachi’s gift to the world. She said that the complex will start a service for disseminating environment intelligence throughout the world.
Nargis Latif told the participants that Gul Bahao’s work has been the linking of the environment with the economy. For several months it carried out a campaign Gold for Garbage and used to give 24 carat gold nuggets in addition to cash to the junk dealer in return for their garbage. This gave an impetus to a whole generation of junk dealers to start dealing with waste material which they previously ignored. This has also given an impetus to the local industry as more an more raw material is being made available to it which was previously being thrown into the Kachra Kundis.
Nargis Latif said that her organization has gone through several ups and downs. At its peak which has being about three times she said that between seventy to eighty people were working and up to a dozen vehicles were going to different parts of the city.
The managing trustee of Gul Bahao said that her organization not only conducts research but it also undertakes advocacy campaigns. She told them that Gul Bahao is now trying to advocate the use of industrial effluents for use in aforestation. She said that we cannot bring a clash between industrialization and the environment by going for one or the other. No doubt she said it is good to advocate environment friendly industry related to simple technology. However one should try to use recycling as a tool for minimizing the dangers accruing from large scale industry. She said that plantations should be grown along the drains carrying factory effluents. These will act as suction pumps. On the other hand the wood of these trees may be regularly cut down and sold for furniture, building purposes or even for fuel. The participants highly appreciated Nargis’s lecture and the leader of the delegation invited her to visit the federal ministry’s institute for local bodies.