KARACHI - The Governor House in Karachi was host to a special celebration to honor the organizations which make Karachi a vibrant and thriving city with their social welfare contribution - the closing ceremony of KE’s 2nd KHI Awards, an initiative endorsed by NEPRA and launched in collaboration with #IAmKarachi. 40 winners from across 13 diverse categories – from Heritage & Culture to Sports, Social Service to Safety, and more - were recognized for their efforts in driving societal change in Karachi as part of their core mission. Chief guest of the event was Governor Sindh Imran Ismail, while Chairman NEPRA Tauseef H. Farooqi, and Muhammad Azfar Ahsan, Minister of State & Chairman of Board of Investment (BOI), were guests of honor for the event.

Following the pandemic, businesses across the globe were faced with increased risk and instability regardless of their size, but the utility observed that the sector most affected was the one tasked with addressing societal problems. While new initiatives primarily focused on food security, improved hygiene, and securing livelihood, many actors addressing pertinent challenges beyond these areas were left out of the mix. The KHI Awards addresses this problem by providing an equitable and impartial avenue through which winners are awarded grants of PKR 40 million in the form of rebates on electricity bills.

Appreciating the KHI Awards, he said that Karachi Awards has emerged as a perfect forum for encouragement for the organizations working to uplift the society at large. While lauding other initiatives of the power utility, he further said: “Another project of K-Electric that needs to be encouraged is Roshni Baji, through which women are empowered by becoming safety ambassadors and going door to door for electrical safety awareness.” He also stressed upon other organisations to come up with similar initiatives to provide relief to the community and to bring betterment to the society.

Muhammad Azfar Ahsan, Minister of State & Chairman BOI, during his address at the event said, “We must appreciate K-Electric as it honors those organizations today which are playing a critical role in bringing betterment to the city and remain committed to making it more livable and sustainable. Karachi being the economic hub of the country has tremendous potential to attract further foreign investment, improved state of the city however, remains a pre-requisite. Therefore, we need to make collective efforts to address this city’s challenges and prioritize its progress on every fronts.”

Chairman NEPRA Tauseef H. Farooqi congratulated the winners and appreciated KE’s initiative. Addressing the audience, he said, “It is commendable to see that KE is finding innovative ways to take ownership of the communities it serves. We have to understand that creating meaningful relationships with customers and the environment is necessary to drive sustainable progress. This is why NEPRA introduced the ‘Power with Prosperity’ vision to galvanize the power sector, and we have seen sizable investment and job creation across Pakistan through CSR efforts.”

Launched in December 2021, the 2nd edition of the awards saw hundreds of applications that were screened through an extensive and rigorous evaluation process. An independent jury of 15 members, including notable names like Shehzad Roy, Sidra Iqbal, Jehan Ara, and others, led Saad Amanullah Khan, founder and current president of #IAmKarachi. EY Ford Rhodes Chartered Accountants, a member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited, served as the Official Award Auditors, overseeing the process and ensuring impartiality.

Saad Amanullah Khan, President of the KHI Awards jury, was also delighted at the event, stating, “It has been a pleasure to be part of the KHI Awards for the second year running. Not only did we receive a higher number of applications this year compared to last, the quality and innovation of the projects proposed by the applicants also demonstrate the commitment they have towards Karachi. We are very pleased to present this year’s winners who are impacting millions of people with their services and look forward to growing the KHI Awards further.”

Chief Executive Officer K-Electric Moonis Alvi was also elated at the occasion, stating, “At KE, we believe in going beyond the provision of power to Karachi; we are committed to building great societies. For cities like Karachi, this is not a simple task and requires the contribution of hundreds of large and small organizations working around the clock. With the KHI Awards, we want to extend our support and create a platform that can lead the change in this megalopolis we call home. I am grateful to our auditors and our jury members for ensuring transparency and credibility in the process, and the Honorable Governor Sindh and Chairman NEPRA for joining us in this celebration.”

Famous Pakistani drama writer and lyricist, Anwar Maqsood also took the center stage and enthralled the audience with his dry humour and witticism. Celebrated Pakistani pop singer Shahzad Roy who was also the jury member at 2nd KHI Awards, rocked the events by singing a song which was composed for and dedicated to the welfare organizations operating in Karachi.