Heavily Crowded. Severely Polluted. Revered like a shrine. Often used as a jumping pad by suicidals. The Native Jetty Bridge is in true sense people’s landmark. A daily ritual of feeding Kites, pigeons and crows has been going on for ages. The ritual could be as old as the history of the bridge itself. Who knows. Who cares. More importantly the bridge provides a public space to people to live in the moment. To live in the moment the way they want.
Karachi modern port started its operations big time on 1854. A mole was constructed to connect city to the harbor. After few years Native Jetty Bridge was built with other important bridges in the area. Now the bridge is crossed by millions each day on their way to work. Few stop and buy balls of dough and pieces of meat and throw it in the air for kites to catch them before they disappear in mossy water. Below you can see development work going on the food street. It is expected that Grand Port project will be launched soon. It is an effort to transform the area’s reputation from a polluted road junction to a home to contemporary art, fashion and cuisine. Nothing has been done to reduce the pollution in the area though.
To get there park your car in front of burnt-renovated Bahria complex on M.T.Khan road. Walk towards the bridge footsteps. There is a newly paved road going to Grand Port food street and a small street diverting to the Lakshminarayan Mandar. Take the stairs and go up. Buy some dough balls and throw them up. This luxury may not remain with the people for long.