My name is Arif Hasan, I am an architect and planner. I work out of Karachi, in Pakistan. I have been associated with the Orangi Pilot Project since 1981, a year after it was commenced, first as its principal consultant, and subsequently as chairperson of its Research and Training Institute. >> My name is Diana Mitlin. I'm professor of global urbanism at the School of Education, Environment and Development at the University of Manchester. And it's my pleasure today to be talking to Arif Hasan, who is one of the key thinkers and actors behind the Orangi Pilot Project, which is a project that has addressed the sanitation needs of many in Karachi, but has also been a project that has catalyzed a rethinking of the approaches to urban development, and influenced many other projects and programs across the Global South. So Arif, one of the things that I would say is extraordinarily important in seminal experience in urban development around strategies to address urban poverty and inequality is the experience of the Orangi pilot project. I know I learned so much from your work and from Perween's work, Anwar Rashid as well. And I think the students have had a chance to look at the video that talks about, it gives a historical snapshot of what's happened in Orangi. So I think it would be useful if you could explain a little about how the project emerged and what lay behind its approach, which has proven to be so innovative. >> I think the origins of the project are very different for what it eventually became. [COUGH] There was a organization that funded development in Pakistan. It was known as the BCCI Foundation. And you had a very well known, very celebrated social scientist called Akhtar Hameed Khan. Orangi was large informal settlement, and into that informal settlement in the late 70s, refugees from Bangladesh came and settled. And the BCCI Foundation was interested in doing something for those refugees. And so they approached Dr. Akhtar Hameed Khan, a celebrated social scientist, who had retired, and who was spending all of his time reading texts. And they asked him to do something for this refugee population. Akhtar Hameed Khan refused. He said I will not do anything for an ethnic group. Orangi is multi-ethnic, and so if you want me to do something, I will do it for Orangi. Akhtar Hameed Khan had never worked in an urban setting, and he was not well aware of what an informal settlement was. So, he asked the Foundation for a jeep and a small room in the settlement, and he asked for a small salary, really very small salary. And so he roamed about Orangi. And during his roamings around, he came to realize that the most important thing for the people of Orangi was sanitation. The streets were full of filth, and he also saw that many lanes and neighborhoods had tried to solve this problem, but not too well. The work was substandard, there was a lack of understanding about hydrology, a lack of understanding of what a sewage system is, and it was a waste of money of the people. Now, in his conversations with the people, the people said old man, why do you want us to do something? Go and tell the Karachi Development Authority and the Karachi Municipal Corporation to do this work for us. After all, they do it for rich settlements. So the first barrier of Akhtar Hameed Khan in bringing communities together was that they wanted development done by the local government. This was the first problem. And this was very difficult to overcome. So what we did do at that time was to take community leaders, they were self-appointed leaders actually, the toughs of the area, who had become the leaders, to the Karachi Municipal Corporation, and to the Karachi Development Authority. And they sat down across the table and spoke to them, and for the first time in their lives. And the local government said, sorry we don't give free sanitation or free water supply to the elite, they actually pay for it. And the cost is so high that you will not be able to pay for it. So they went back and discussed this amongst themselves. Meanwhile, Akhtar Hameed Khan was seeing how he could develop a system for sanitation, which could involve the communities, which could organize them. So, he came up with what has now come to be known as The Component Sharing Model. So we worked on the basis of four levels of sanitation. The first is the latrine in the home. The second is the lane sewer in the lane. The third is the collector sewer, which brings the lane sewers together. These three developments, we called internal development. And then there was external development, which was trunk sewers and treatment plants. So we came to the conclusion that the internal development could be done by the people. If it could be made affordable, they could do this themselves. And then the government should complement their work by doing the external development. So this was the thinking. And I think it took about 78 months before the first lane said okay, you give us advice and we'll build this sanitation system, the internal part of it. So this barrier was overcome. >> I think it would very useful if you just elaborated on the significance of component sharing. >> Yes. >> Because it's quite an unusual approach. In most projects, there's a much more confusion of finance with some cost-sharing arrangement- >> Yes. >> That's not so clear cut between, a space inside, and a space outside. >> I will explain that as I go along. The second barrier were the social barrier. An individual house can't build a sanitation system in the lane, so that was a barrier, so you needed an organization. Now these people came from different areas of Pakistan. Most of them were recent migrants to Orangi. There was a problem of trust involved here. So, we decided that the [INAUDIBLE] organization would be able to reach 10 to 40 people, households. It was small, they all knew each other so there would be no problem of trust. The third problem was the economic problem, how could they afford it? For this, it became necessary to revisit conventional engineering technology on sanitation and modify it substantially so that it could be made affordable to the people. And the last barrier was a technical barrier. They needed plans. They needed estimates. They needed tools. They needed supervision. The masons had to be trained. The plumbers had to be trained. So these were these four barriers. >> And you identify the technical barrier because this work that Dr. Hamid Khan could see was substandard. So people had started to put in drainage and sanitation, but the quality was not good enough. >> Yeah, it never worked. It had to be redone every now and then or it would have to be abandoned. So we decided that we would give technical advice and managerial guidance to the lenses. And we would give them estimates, we provided the tools, and we would provide them with maps. Now the way we operated was, we held meetings [INAUDIBLE]. And in the meetings we told the people that if you form an organization and you elect, select, nominate, however you want to say, new manager. And all, the whole [INAUDIBLE] Then we will give you technical advice. The manager collected the money from the people and began work. We never touched the money of the people, we have nothing to do with it. >> The technical advice if I remember correctly, was provided free of charge. >> Yes. >> It isn't charged the communities for the. >> No. Neither for the tools and not for the technical advice. This was our responsibility. Now we're coming to the component sharing model. [INAUDIBLE] was very clear about one thing. He always said that if people can generate money, if they can excess money and if they can determine how it is to be spent, then they get empowered, provided the unit of organization is smaller. If it is small, it will be cohesive and there will be no corruption and problems of trust. So, also this completely removes any financial interaction between the community or the NGO or the government that was going to finance the extender. You have a clear cut division, most of the projects at that stage which I studied or was asked to study by him, they had problems of a conflict between the different partners of the project. There was the whole aspect of sweat equity which also created lots of problems. So here, once you divide this up like this the lane is not your business, they do it how they want, as long as the product is okay. So, in that sense, component sharing removed all subsidy, direct subsidy to the community. The subsidy was now in the external development. So this was basically the concept. I think nine months it took for the first lane to be built. And once the lane was built, the people saw the problem, and they saw the solution. And they started applying to the OPP for assistance. >> And you spoke a little bit earlier about how the people believed that the government should provide support for them. And then they discussed with local government, it was explained to them that the rich paid. Did they accept that? Did they find it easy to accept that? >> I think it was not so easy, but the government officials are very good inasmuch as they explained that we have a development charge and they also told them that we are negotiating with the international financial institutions and we'll get money from them. And then we'll use this money for bringing benefits to you, but right now we can't because we don't have that money. So that led us to look at work of the international financial institutions, the loans that had been given for similar sanitation work. And we discovered that in the analysis that we made, this was 1982, that the government of Pakistan provided infrastructure to the people of Pakistan at about 5 times the actual cost of labor immediately involved. And this was not all corruption, this was just antiquated ways of tendering and conditionalities in appointing a contractor which made it impossible for the small contractors to bid, so the big contractors bid. They had large overheads and they were not particularly interested in the quantity that they were putting in a low-income area. So we made this analysis and when we saw that once the international loan came in, the cost would go up substantially, anything up to 50%. It would go up for various reasons, maybe consultancy from abroad, they set up offices, they get paid, the standards will go up also, supervision would be stricter and costly and when there was an international tender it could, for big projects, it could go up by 200 to 300%. And because the Pakistani company just didn't stand a chance in an international tender. So we also decided that we would mobilize local resources. And all our planning went, both external and internal, would be based on resources that are available in, within Orangi or within the country. Orangi at that time had a population of 700,000. Now, it's about 1.3 million. >> I think for me, one of the most innovative aspects of your work is the emphasis on affordability. And I've seen many projects, I'm sure other viewers have also seen them, where the cost of the project is far too great to be replicated. So, I think it would be very interesting if you just elaborated on the ways in which you sought to, what your affordability target was in terms of your analysis of what households could afford to invest for this internal sanitation, and then how you went about ensuring that the product you were offering met that affordability constraint. >> What we did to understand affordability was to look at how people had tried to solve their problem and successfully And so we asked them, how much have you spent? So, we got an idea that they could spend so much, that was one thing. Secondly, we also spoke to lanes that had not done this work, and they said they couldn't afford it. That we told them can you afford it over a period of time if you save for it? Or can you make arrangements with the wealthier residents who can give a loan and recover it later? These were just ideas we threw at them. And they followed those ideas. And we've documented this in case studies. One thing that re-emerged was that savings for the project were made by women, from the housekeeping money. And also, that in a very large number of cases, the women were the treasurers of that money. They were trusted more, I think. They didn't take drugs [LAUGH] or gamble, et cetera, so they were more trusted. So, this is how we came to an understanding that is what the community can't afford. Now, once we knew what they can afford, both over a period of time and immediately, you had to make a product that was affordable. We need three things for that. One was the reinforced concrete pipes that we were going to use for the underground sewage, their jointing process were changed. Made it simpler, easier, cheaper. The second thing that we did, we questioned engineering standards. That meant gradients, sizes of pipes. And we worked out rules of thumb that were very different from conventional engineering standards. All the gradients, we reduced them substantially, and the engineers were very horrified, the government engineers they said it would never work. But the big problem that we faced was there was very little water in Orangi to operate a underground sewage system. And this was one of the main reasons why much of what the people had done had failed and got choked up. So for that, we invented a one chamber septic tank, into which all the solids would go and get eaten up by the microbes. And the only water would then flow into the pipes, into the switch pipes. Now, this was criticized because you don't have a one chamber septic tank for this feature, but that was all the people could afford. I was told by Akhtar Hameed Khan 240 rupees. He said 250. So I said, why do we always think in fifties and hundreds? He said, all right, make it 240. So, we had to produce this in 240 rupees, and this is all that we could produce. It works. It functions. So affordability was taken care of like this. The other thing was the disposal point. Where would the sewage go? So, we dumped it in the natural drainage system, strong rains. There was again a hue and cry. But, all of Karachi's sewage goes into the natural drainage system, and our logic was that the sewage of the people of Orangi is no different from the sewage of the elite areas of the city. So this was accepted. The second was that we had no plan where a lane from anywhere could request for assistance. So it was like a jigsaw puzzle that you put together, which is not how planning is done. And to help us in doing that, advisers told us, get a surveying company to make a map of Orangi. I disagreed with that. We got about 40 students from the university who mapped Orangi. And the reason for that was that students would interact with the people, there would be a conversation, they'd have tea, they'd gossip, and the people would get to know the benefits of the system. So mapping was done. Then we made what was now, what we call, it's called Councilor Ward book. So for every ward of the councilor, we had the map, we had the existing systems if there were any, and we had where a secondary drain, the trunk of external development had to go. We mapped that out. So many councilors invested their money in building the trunk infrastructure, although initially they were dead against us because they thought we were going to take over politically, which was not the intention. But once they knew that there was no such threat to them, they put their money into the trunk sewers. >> And when you say their money, you mean there was a system where they had a small- >> Yeah, they had an annual grant. They had a small annual grant they used to get at that time. It was very small. In many places, it was augmented by the people themselves, they added money to the councilors' program. So that is how we were able to dump all this sewage, I've forgotten how many million gallons per day, I don't remember, into the natural drainage system. >> And the video shows the ways in which lanes have taken up the scheme and improved their situation. So you have I think from the video a very clear understanding, which I myself have seen of lanes which move from having open drains to having a smooth pathway with no feces, running water. But at that point in 92, had you already seen some investment in trunk sewers taking place? >> Only through councilors' funds, and only to the trunk sewers that took the neighborhood effluent to the storm drains. That was the only investment when this movie was made in 1992. >> I guess 92 was about the first time, actually, I came to Orangi, I think probably 93, was the first time I came. And so much has happened since then. >> Yes. >> So, I think it will be useful if you could elaborate how the trunk sewer investment took place, how waste treatment plants finance was secured, so I think that's an important step in the process of providing sanitation to Orangi. >> 1992 was an important year for us because we had been lecturing, Akhtar Hameed Khan and myself also, ex-director who's dead now, Perween Rahman, we had been lecturing regularly at the National Institute of Public Administration, which is where bureaucrats are trained. And bureaucrats would come and visit us as well. One bureaucrat who visited us very often and showed an enormous amount of interest in the project was this named Sadiki. He eventually became, no, in 1991 he became the Director General of the Sinthka Chair by the authority that is the Sinth Squad [INAUDIBLE] Authority. Which improves squadron settlements, informal settlements, and also regularizes them. So the seamen opted the model of the original pilot project. And in his settlements that he was regularizing and improving, he built the transfers and he changed the natural rates into box chunks. The designs, the concept was provided by the [INAUDIBLE] project. But it was carried out by him. And immediately you saw the enormous difference because waste water simply disappeared. And those box trunks became pathways and places where people could sit. >> And the box trunks were where you have a concrete lined drain with a slab on top? >> Yes, you have a concrete lined drain, you have a slab on top. Over here also we provided the designs but we did did not provide the estimates. We left that to the local bodies, because we did not want to interfere in their financial matters. So that is how it began, through [INAUDIBLE] 's work with the [INAUDIBLE]. And quite a few, I think four or five big and nitrogens were converted into box trunks. But I think real change came with the local government elections in 2001. Karachi got divided into 18 downs each with their own mayor and bureaucracy. And these towns, I think almost twelve of them, I think, converted their box, converted their natural drains into box trunks. The OPP provided the designs, and they implemented that. Again, we didn't go into the costing of that. So, if you look at Orangi now, 106,000 house have build their sewage system and all the natural rains of Orangi have been turned into box trunks by the local government. Only the main Orangi rather, or the main Orangi drain Is left, all the others have been committed. How did this conversion place and how did we, how we're we'll be able to present this in the plans for this conversion to the local government? That's an interesting story. I think it was 1996, that we started mapping and formal settlements. Once we started working with this, I could tell by the authority, it being that it became necessary to map settlements. And you mentioned a little bit earlier that when you first started working Orangi, you'd done some mapping with these 40 students. >> Yes. >> And did you have to remap those areas? >> We remapped them. Because Google had come into being, and the whole mapping process changed. It became more scientific, it became easier and my colleague she created a team of young people in Orangi, the boys and girls. And they first came as interns. Then after that, some of them stayed on to work in the mapping unit of. They were taught how to survey and how to map. They were also taught how to design houses and buildings so they were showed how to better architects. And this mapping process changed everything in Karachi. Because the enormous amount of infrastructure that had been built by local government and by the community had never bene mapped. So whenever there was a project, the engineers behaved as if nothing existed over there at all. So once we met this 300 segments, you saw that both local government and the people had invested enormous amounts of money, which was never taken into consideration. And, through the process of mapping settlements, we were able to map all the natural drainage system of Karachi. All of it and once you looked at it you knew that all the sanitation, all the sewage was flowing into these two rivers through these, how would you call them, storm drains and we can [INAUDIBLE] to them. Almost all of them in Orangi had already been converted, but in other areas also they have been converted. So this mapping was really important, because for the first time the local government where they able to see what existed. And they accepted the OPP model. At least the public representatives accepted it. I don't think the engineers have accepted it as yet especially, but it happened. And I suppose One can see that we have a model that can overcome this sanitation, the largest sanitation issue. >> One of the things I've always understood is important in the development of your model to the next stage, in terms of Orangi's own work, was the loan that was offered from the Asian Development Bank. >> Yeah, there was a project. There was the sanitation project both for Orangi and a very large informal settlement next to it in the Baldia. And we negotiated with the local government and with the Asian Development Bank And we said we would work in those parts of Orangi where there was no sanitation system or we would build trunks where there was a sanitation system and no trunks. And that in Orangi we did not a ADB project executed in the way the local government wanted it, but we would do it on a component sharing basis. The people would bring the internal, the local government would bring the external. It was accepted, so you had two models. One in and they did everything, the name, all of it. And on the other hand, you had the OPP model in Orangi. They ran together at the same time. In Orangi we did something else, we trained local communities, or those technically people, who were in the local communities, to monitor the construction of the ADB project. And, It was done in the beginning out of conflict and unpleasantness. But they somehow managed to live together after that. This project was very important because it established a very firm and somewhat formal relationship between the Orangi Pilot Project, the local government and the Karachi Water and Sewage Board. I think the cost of this whole exercise in Orangi came to approximately 3,000 rupees, 2,800, something around that. Whereas the Asian Development Project cost came to about 80,000 rupees per household, so there was a very big difference between the two. >> And this was because in Orangi the ADB finance was simply providing the trunk sewers. >> That's right. >> Whereas in Baldia it was having to provide- >> Every lane. >> All the components. >> Every lane, every lane. Also I think the other difference was how people negotiated the quality with the contractors. Contractors are very upset because of the people's interference. But surprisingly, the Karachi Water and Sewage Board engineers were not. And I think one other lesson that my colleague Perween learned, which she practiced later on through this project was that what was really important were the mid level bureaucrats, and the mid level engineers, and not the ones at the top. And these ones in the middle, it was they really who took the decisions, and it was passed on to the top, where the boss simply signed, yes or no. So this, she cultivated this relationship. But it all began through this ADB project. >> And the tension around the contractors when they were putting in the trunks was around the quality of their work? >> Yes, many things, for example, curing of concrete in the manholes. We had made a list of instructions for the community leaders. It has to be cured for so many days before it's covered up. Jointing of the pipes, it needed support at the junctions. Otherwise, it would sink. And we saw that the contractors didn't follow any of this, they used to do it fast, quickly, get it covered up so these problems, but they were eventually resolved. >> And when you reflect- >> I think we gave in a little bit. >> [LAUGH] >> I think they gave in hell of a lot, but [COUGH]. >> I mean, when you look at the work that was done in Baldia and the work that was done in Orangi, one by communities and one by an external agent, can you see a difference in how they've been maintained? >> Yes, yes. The Baldia project never got used, much of it, not all of it, much of it. That is because the people had already laid sewage in many parts of Baldia and some even with our assistance. The government project didn't map that or integrate it, so in many lanes in Baldia the system doesn't work, it's just been lying there unconnected. Quality is poorer and maintenance since I've been working in Baldia now, maintenance is heavily dependent on the counselor or the local government. In the case of Orangi, people have invested in it, so they maintain it. They don't maintain it in any formal way, by the way. In most cases, it is crisis management. It gets blocked, so you quickly collect money and you get it done or if the manhole has collapsed, you replace it. >> So you were talking a little bit earlier about how with the support of Tasneem Siddiqui, when he became director general of the Sindh Katchi Abadi Authority. You began to expand the model in Orangi outside of Orangi into other communities in Karachi. >> Well, the expansion in to other communities we began much earlier, we began in the mid 80s. It was a disaster simply because we were not there and we tried to be there. So when you're not there and you try to be there, the program can't possibly work. So that was extremely disturbing, and there were a number of failures. And we worked with very good people, I must say. We worked with Aga Khan Hospital also. And we worked with Baqai Medical College, as well. But it couldn't work. So that was the time when we created the Research and Training Institute. The purpose of the institute was that you, any settlement or any activist anywhere wants to replicate the Orangi Pilot Project, a sanitation experience. They would come to Orangi, they would watch, look. Imbibe the culture of Orangi, of the OPP, which is rather austere and very clearly defines the community's role and the project's own role. It doesn't really create an overlap. And then they would go back and convince their people, and then they would come back to receive training. So the training modules, evolved over time as we made mistakes and adjusted to it. In essence, the model is the person comes, spends time, goes back, convinces some other people, they also come. They form a team and they receive training in mapping, surveying, mapping, supervision, mobilizing people, construction. And they go back, and they do this and we give top supervision by visiting the place once in three months, or once in two months or whatever. But whenever these people started work, immediately the local bodies would come and say stop it. >> By local bodies you mean local governments. >> Local governments. Stop it, you have no permission to do this. Karachi is a different story. They don't interfere. They let it go. It's a big city, huge settlements, so Rakia and Karachi. But in the other places, in the other towns, you can do it. >> Places like Faisalabad and Islamabad. >> Yes, exactly, Faisalabad is a case in point. [COUGH] So at that point they write to us. And they say, we've come to a standstill. So at that point we invite the local government officials to come to Karachi. And everyone likes to come to Karachi, at least use to, I don't know now with all the violence but they used to come. They have a nice time in Karachi. And you know, it's interesting that in all cases local government representatives who came to Karachi, supported the project. I cannot give one instance where they said we will not support it. They created hurdles in it because once they supported it through external development, they used to also try and interfere with the internal development. They would make offers to. Who the residence that we will get it done for you, etc. But a lot of formulas emerged from this, which also component sharing. Which was, for example, a lane lays its sanitation system. The local government paves the lane. So that model also emerged that if you build your sanitation system, we will pave the lane. Many lanes, I don't remember exactly how many, have been paved in this process by local government support. >> So when you're saying so the local government officials, it was the officials more than the politicians, or you also had politicians visiting? >> We had politicians visiting also. And very different, the approach of the politicians and the government officials. Government officials were interested in investing what was known as the annual development plan funds into this model, Because they realized that the funds were small and this could be spread out. Also they were monitored by their bosses there to have a annual report, without which they could not go up the ladder, etc. So there was an interest. The politicians on the other hand, wanted to give gifts. We can get this down for you, why are you bothered about it? So, it was more difficult to deal with the politicians who wanted to give something. Also, members of parliament and members of the assembly, they get funds for development, every city. But they get funds of development. So it was only in two or three cases which they tied the development funds with the work that was being supported by the OPP. That's why I said it did not happen. >> I mean, you talked a little bit earlier about the concern of the engineers about the standards that you were using within your sanitation model. Have you seen that continuing concern as you've engaged other local authorities in Pakistan? >> That concern is there. It's there in spite of the fact that now we have lanes that are about 30 years old. But the concern is there. Unless you have new standards taught in the university, I don't think the concern will go away. It's very deeply entrenched in engineering theory. It seems you can't teach at the university without theory even though the Wright Brothers flew the first aircraft without any theory of aerodynamics. But anyway, that's how it is. >> Yes, they probably wouldn't be allowed now. >> [LAUGH] >> [LAUGH] I think it would be interesting if you expanded a little bit on this culture. Because I think one of the things that struck me when I visited OPP, and Perween was talking about the way in which you functioned. She explained how when the communities first engaged your project, they were very suspicious about you. And they thought that you'd been given international assistance but were keeping all that money and telling them they had to invest their own money. So then you started to published your accounts every three months. >> I think there are number of things because of these people related to us. First of all, we had no management structure. You had engineers, you had architects, social organizers. You had technicians, they all received more or less the same pay, much much less then any NGO receives. The offices were not air conditioned as usually NGO officers are. There were no big cars, no brothels. So that austerity, I think, was very important because the rich people related to us. There was a common culture in many ways. The second great asset was himself spoke the language of the people. He understood them, he understood how their society functioned, what their relationships were. And so he was able to talk to them and I think the staff learned from him how to discuss things. I think that was a great asset, great, great asset. So that was one of the reasons. Also, had a remarkable understanding of religion. He was a Koranic scholar. He was also a scholar interest in Buddhism. And so he could understand very much the religious aspects of the community. Although, most of the community was not religious, but we have superstitious more than religious. And so he played upon that as well. And then I remember 1981, he was told by his one of his colleagues who had been one of his colleagues in a meeting, I was there as well. He was told but you cannot run a project like this. You need a management team, you need a hierarchy. So he said that well, if it doesn't work, we'll change it. But this is what I wanted to be and so there was a bit of an argument. And he told me after the person left, he said, I am going to be like one Buenaventura Durruti. And I said, who on Earth is he? So he said he was a Spanish anarchist. [LAUGH] And so this remains until the structure was eventually given and [INAUDIBLE] were changed. But that happened much later. I would say it happened around 1989, 90. >> And going back to this, do you still publish the accounts? Do you still publish three months? Is it three months or [CROSSTALK] >> The accounts are published, they are public. No salary is hidden, no cost that has been incurred is hidden at all. Even financial failures, which happened for example, the micro created program had a lot of problems. I spelled it out in the report, gave the council it. >> And have you persuaded other NGOs to follow that practice? >> Our partners, yes. We have a number of partners. What happened was that these people who came and worked with us, they went back into the areas, they formed their own organizations. Then we created something known as the Community Development Network, in which all these partners became members. And every three months, we have a meeting at a different partner location, where everyone gets together to discuss what has happened, what they've done, what their problems are. And the training process has developed different levels of knowledge. For example, run may be very good at mobilization The other is good at technical support. The third is good at innovating new things. So they can independently meet each other and get support. Where the NGOs, the CBOs or NGOs, have been very successful, we turn them into training centers or support them into becoming training centers. So, for example, in Southern Punjab, we have a NGO that trains a lot of government officials, and trains a lot of local activists as well in expanding the program. >> So could you just summarize the scale of work around your model? >> Okay, if I remember correctly. We have reached out directly to about 200,000 households who have built their sanitary latrines and their lanes. 106,000 of those are in Orangi, the rest are in other locations. All together, local communities have invested about $3 million US dollars in internal sanitation. And the various provincial and local governments have invested about 12.5 million in extended infrastructure. Now, in Orangi, extended infrastructure was cheap because you had slopes, you had gradients, so it was all right, and you had a disposal point. In much of the work done outside of Orangi, you didn't have disposal points and you had almost no gradients. So, in that case, an external infrastructure is expensive as compared to internal infrastructure, in the case of Karachi because of the gradients, internal and the large scale of the settlements. Internal infrastructure is far more expensive, as a whole costs much more than external infrastructure. >> And so you were speaking earlier about the importance of waste disposal. So as you said, in Orangi, more or less on a hill, so it flows down? And you could sequence the internal followed by the externals, as the communities grew stronger. In other parts of Pakistan, you've had to put the external infrastructure in first. >> Yeah. >> And what are the lessons that come out of that sequencing? >> In many cases, not in all cases, but in many cases. In many cases, there were already government trunks was that we connected to. But sometimes they were very far away from the settlement so it was costly. Two models developed. One was we gave a loan to the community, to help them build the external themselves. And every lane that connected to the drain, to the trunks were would then have to pay a connection charge. And like that, that fund would revolve. This happened in two cases. The second was where the community would pressurize the local government into building the external. But for that, you had to have a design of the external, you had to cost it, and that was done by the community with our help, or with the help of one of the partners. And invariably, I would say about 70% of the cases, there was a positive response from the local government into building the trunks. But why did the local government agree? I think that's an important question. It agreed because of the publicity that the Orangi Pilot Project received. And the publicity was made possible by the stature of Akhtar Hameed Khan and his previous work. Also, it was made possible by our documentation and by our relationship with the media. I mean, many of us, not many, but at least two of us in the organization, had close media links. I had that media link because I was a semi-journalist because I used to write for the press regularly. And one more member, Anwar Ashut, had links because of him being a member of a strong left-wing movement. And so the two things helped in media projection immensely. >> If you would elaborate, what was it that meant that media exposure encouraged the local government to look positively on you? Was it that they legitimated it? Or was it that the council was nervous about adverse publicity, if they were reluctant to invest in this? >> I think local government is very sensitive to the media because it's constantly under attack. The media doesn't spare it. And so when articles came in the press about the Orangi Pilot Project, when it was put across that it was the solution to Pakistan's problems. But of course, it was not, but anyway, [COUGH] at least for sanitation it was to a great extent. The local government could not possibly oppose it because of this media support. [COUGH] Also, after Tasneem Siddiqui came into the picture, things changed. Local government became far more supportive because here was a senior bureaucrat with a very good reputation. And who had been working on poverty issues for a long time, [COUGH] so that helped, immensely. And also our lecturing at the staff college where bureaucrats are trained, lecturing at the National Institute of Public Administration, where mid-level bureaucrats are trained, at the Metropolitan Institute. So this contact with bureaucracy through these lectures and courses. Also, we gave presentations to Army Generals, so this was very important. There are five important aspects of the OPP and they all go together. Number one is a populist culture and image, very important. Second, an informed public. Also very important which the media did by inviting people to come and listen to us, and look at the project. Third, an affordable technology. Fourth, constant contact with government policy initiatives and involvement in them. And five, Being a part of a global debate on sanitation or whatever we do. Because if we did not have this global debate, we are part of a larger global debate, I think we would die of narcissism, perhaps [LAUGH]. So these were the five elements that went into shaping the project. As they say, five legs of a round table, this is Confucianism. The round table is the table of consensus making, so you have these five legs. >> Very strongly rooted consensus building table. I think one of the things that would certainly preoccupy people who are running NGOs and who are listening is how you've managed to finance your continued existence. Because you've carried on providing free technical assistance, as I understand. >> Yep. I can't let you into the secrets, but broadly speaking we have a very generous donor in the form of the BCCI. BCCI is just a notorious bank that eventually got closed down. They were generous, and they did not ask us for anything. Made it very clear to them that there would be no targets, at all. There however would be a regular report. So that was one big positive aspect. And we saved from what they gave us, saved a lot and put it in an endowment. And then we had other sources of funding from which we also saved. And with the permission of the donors we said, could we put this aside in an endowment? There were lot of philanthropists who also wanted to help and support us. So this is one thing which created a fund. Otherwise we've had funding, not for sanitation but for other things. School programs, health program, rural development programs, we've had funding for that. For sanitation, funding came from. And came from WaterAid, fairly generous funding from WaterAid for many, many years. And also our partners were able to get independent funding for themselves or through WaterAid. WaterAid supported a lot of our partners. Our budget is small. It's not a big budget because it's basically an administrative budget. Salaries, cars, even cars. We decided not to use them, rather hire them, because it was cheaper. And the rest is done by the people. The money's invested by the people in government and development. >> And so if you now have reached this 200,000 plus households, how do you anticipate your reach growing? >> In 2006 or 7, maybe 8, I don't remember, the federal government asked us to prepare a background paper on sanitation. And that background paper would lead to a federal government sanitation policy. So we did that. I was the government's consultant for it and we did it in a very special way. We had workshops at the provincial level, we had workshops at the district level. And finally, we brought all these workshops together in Islamabad at the federal level. And the policy is more or less based on the Orangi model, which is component sharing. For example, if a developer wishes to develop an area, he provides the internal. The government will not provide the internal. So, this was something that we proposed, the federal government accepted it. The provincial governments except for the Punjab have done nothing about it. But to the Punjab, the policy is being applied through government funds, and their officials are being trained in this process. Hopefully it will happen in the other provinces also. That's one positive thing. The second thing. >> Just, before you go on, could you just expand on why this approach is better than what was there before? >> Before, there has always been constant conflicts between developers and the local government. There have been conflicts between the provincial government and the local government as to who does what. Here, it is clear. >> [COUGH] Okay, so now they have a system? >> They have a system, I mean, of course they can always have a conflict if they want to. But the system is now clear cut, the responsibilities are clearly defined. The government will have to provide technical knowhow and will have to train its people. Since we are in Sindh province, it is easier for us to work with the Sindh government. But we have very strong partners in the Punjab who are, well let us say that the Punjab authority. An important official of that authority is also member of an NGO that is our partner. And a powerful NGO. So then there are these linkages. >> Okay, okay, thank you. So I interupted you. You were going on to say, the second aspect. >> I don't remember. >> Okay, so the first aspect was- >> [LAUGH] >> The legislation, I think. >> Yeah, yeah, so that is there. The model is now fairly well established to grow by itself. And we keep giving technical advice, but the scale has become very big. So to tackle that scale element, we have started supporting young people in creating institutions that could support our work. For example, one of the interns who worked on mapping was very good, and he trained in mobilization, in mapping, in serving etc, etc. So we set him up as the technical training resource center. Now, a lot of the supervision work in Sindh and Southern Punjab is done by him. A lot of the mapping is done by his organization, so that burden has been removed from us This is very important and we feel there should be more organizations of this nature. >> Well, in that case when this organization that he set up work provides maps or plans, he charges for them to be- >> He charges for them. He charges for them. Not from the communities which initially that work is done. But once the communities have the money, the organization has the money, the local organization then is judged. And our belief is that if he can create similar organizations in different places, we will be able to expand the model substantially. What can I say about this? Yeah, I think that's it. >> I think one of the things you talked about a little earlier was the significance of setting up the research and training institute in Karachi, as having a reference point that people could come and be trained. And then you mentioned you'd encourage some of your partners to set up similar research and training institutes. >> Yes. >> Could you tell us a little bit about how many there have been set up, and the work they do? I think I would say at least four give advice and support to other CBUs. But there is only one I think that has reached the level where it can do everything, which doesn't necessarily require us to be involved in the training process. We meet regularly but it's become more or less an independent organization. And it's spread its work out considerably in southern Punjab. It's very good. >> And what's that organization called? >> It's called HAMET. >> HAMET, okay. >> H-A-M-E-T. >> Okay. And why do you think that one has been managed to develop to a level which the others have found difficult to develop to? >> I think there's a reason for it. The motivator for this whole thing was a government servant and an engineer. I think both these two things put together, he understood the system. He had contacts in the system. He was a good engineer, well-trained, had worked earlier on sanitation. And he was very motivated. So I think these were the factors whereas the others were not engineers. They had to depend on engineering support, get engineers. And the engineers whom they would get looked at this as a job rather than a passion. >> A vocation. >> Yeah, so in this case, I think that was the reason. We worked in very different areas. For example, in the case of Uch, which is an ancient town with beautiful monuments, we have worked and the team we set up, over there you have other considerations. The streets would be pre-paved. Certain houses, their facades would be protected, all that sort of thing, conservation thing. And so the team that evolved there was with the help of conservation architects who were working on the preservation of these buildings. And the team that we helped set up there now also manages parts of the conservation process. So you have a lot of things of this nature where the local organizations deal with many overlaps, building schools. They go onto other things eventually. >> And I'm conscious that you must, in the last, I guess 30 odd years, have seen many attempts to replicate the Orangi Pilot Project. What do you think is the most difficult process, or perhaps putting that question another way, when groups fail to replicate, it are there a consistent set of things that explain that failure to replicate? >> I think so. A replication means replicating human beings, basically. So if you can replicate, when I see replicating human beings, that means adapt the culture, the thinking. There's a high level of motivation. It's not all about money. So once these things, it's about a populist image also. So when these things come together I always say it's like replicating people. So where the people have been replicated, it functions. Where they've not been replicated, it doesn't function. We have had quite a number of big failures where the project began, work began, an international or national NGO came in, they saw this organization, and they said, we support you, we'll give you money. So the organization goes away from this culture, and becomes a part of the larger NGO culture which is affluent. That has happened many times. >> And then essentially the process doesn't move forward. >> No, it doesn't. It becomes a different project. Once the money comes in for development, it becomes a different project. Because in our case there's no money for development. The whole process undergoes a change. >> So in your case, it's clear the finance has got to come from people's own investment in their improvement, and their willingness to engage in political forms of organization, that can negotiate with local authorities, to ensure the local authorities provide their share of the framework for sanitation. >> Yes, that is more or less [COUGH] the model. But see, the numbers are so big in our case, that there has been an acceptance of the model by government, many district governments, and also by provincial governments. [COUGH] For instance, the Southern Punjab projects, auto supply and sanitation projects, on 28 towns with a nation development bank loan, accepted the model, and decided to provide only the external. I think in many cases, they've already provided the external, but the internal has not come, because the internal comes slowly. The internal cannot be decided it's going to come so fast. One day we do it in a month, another day it might take two years before it is enough money to do it. So there is this mismatch in the speed of development. I don't know how we will overcome it or what the danger of it is. As opposed to this, there was a UNDP project for four cities based on the same model. We were the trainers and the monitors. It worked fine. Very quickly the communities built this system, and with UNDP finance, the external was built. So here there was considerable success, but in the case of the ADP funded project, it's been slow. The internal has been slow. And do you think there's still a reluctance in communities to invest in internal sanitation? Do they still view it as this should be something the government provides for them? Or do you think that they see the role of the state differently now? >> I think communities have come to the conclusion that they can manage this. I think that has changed, that really has changed. Whether it has changed because of us, or whether it has changed because of some other reasons, I don't know, I can't see it. [COUGH] But the formula that if you build your sanitation, yourself, the state will provide the paving of the road, that's cotton. >> Mm-hm, okay. >> I just called that idea as cotton. So that is also component sharing and more and more lane are being paved. If I take, for example, which I mentioned earlier, the historic town. The local government has done a lot of paving. And the formula is basically, once you have the sanitation, we'll pave it. But there's a difference between big towns and small towns, which is small, everybody knows each other. And so the team that is doing this work, the young people doing this work, yeah, everyone knows them over there, so it's easier. In a big town like Karachi, it's not so easy. >> Do you think this business of organizing people in lanes, so creating essentially informal but effective forms of association at the local level. Do you think that's changed the way in which political organization works and cuts your bodies? >> Well, the conditions in Pakistan today of conflict, the politics as far as large political parties are concerned, isn't recently one of coercion. So I can't really answer this question. But I can say, that it has changed the relationship between local government and communities where this work has been done. The communities find it much easier now, to negotiate with local government, their barrier between the two has broken down, yes, certainly. >> And when those communities would negotiate, that would require these laying organizations to come together? >> Yeah, they come together in different ways. You have examples where the organizations have voted for the office bearers and formed a proper organization. In other cases, the activist assumes the role of the leader. And he, with a group of friends, determines how things are to be done. In other cases, you have housewives associations, like in Bindi, for example, who have taken on this role of running the organization. So they are not particularly interested in the lane anymore or neighborhood, per se. They set up an organization that tries to do what the Orangi Pilot Project is doing. Providing technical support to communities on one hand, mapping the area and lobbying with the government on the other. This organization in Lower Bindi, run by a woman and support of neighborhood. Their job is essentially mapping and lobbing with the stick to provide the external. And to follow it up by providing paving once the external and internal are built. So there are different models, I mean, it's completely up to them, as to how they evolved. >> And when you draw this network together every three months. The organizations, I think you mentioned, you move around Pakistan to different locations. So then these different groups that come to the network meeting, 40 or so groups, they have a chance to see what else- >> Yes, they go in and take a look. It's usually two days. One day is all about site visits. Next day is all about discussion. >> So, I think one of the things that is also for me important is the way in which you've argued that external finance may not be helpful to the development of a country. And I think you've elaborated this through the example you showed of the way you challenged the figures for providing, I think it was treatment plants, and- >> Well, there was an Asian Development Bank loan that the government had negotiated for a very large area called Korangi, not Orangi, but Korangi. A number of low income settlements, both formal and informal were there. It was known as the Korangi Wastewater Management Project. It was a 100 million US dollar project, 70 million the ADB was providing, and 30 million the government of Sindh was supposed to chip in with. So we got to know it, we just got the documents and we look at the dates and they were phenomenal. In some cases, they were ten times higher than rates that even the local government use. So he went advice this, how can it be so expensive and how's it so cheap? So we mapped that whole area. And we discovered that there was loads of infrastructure that was already existing, which had not been taken into account by the plan. And this infrastructure was draining into the natural drainage system. But the plan was link, trunks along the main roads and also require pumping. Whereas, a new drainage to the natural drainage system, we don't to have pumping, so we really work this all. And he brought down the cost to 22 million instead of 100 million. First, we made a little bit of noise in the press, and then we approached the Governor of Sindh. We explained this to him. He set up a committee to review what we had done. The committee increased the price to about 30 to 35, something 30. Well, on the business of this, the Governor of Sindh canceled ADB loan because it will be done by local funds. Federal government was extremely angry at this. And we were given a little bit of a shouting to us well, because of that. But the project went away. Now, this was the beginning, really, of a larger mapping exercise. Today, we can say with confidence that our proposal, which is a fantastic sector for Karachi, can be built entirely with local money. Except for the treatment plans, which would require a loan or a grant from the federal government, whatever. So this was an important thing in our understanding of how development takes place. And as a result of this, we created the water and sanitation network, separate organization. It consists of CBOs, academics, professionals, NGOs as well, who constantly monitor government programs for sanitation and water and give their input. They use the Urban Resource Center, which is a local organization. The premises of the Urban Resource Center for their meetings, their regular forums on the subject. So that is one institution that came out of this conflict. >> Mm-hm, so anyway, thanks Arif for spending the time in Manchester. Explaining to me and to the audience about the principles and the work of the Orangi Pilot Project. And thanks to all of you for listening. I hope you've really enjoyed it, and that you've learned something from the experience. I think if you look on the website, you'll see a link through to Arif's own website. Where you can find many, many writings about the things that he has talked about today.