KARACHI: The Supreme Court Karachi registry on Saturday reviewed the progress of the anti-encroachment operation in the city.
Justice Gulzar Ahmed, who is monitoring the drive, while presiding over the meeting ordered that the Karachi Master Plan should work under the supervision of the government of Sindh.
Justice Gulzar said that Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) and other departments have destroyed the city and directed the provincial government to take reins of the Master Plan of Karachi and initiate a new beginning.
The court also expressed resentment over slow pace of the anti-encroachment operation and sought explanation from concerned departments pertaining to the delay in removal of the encroachments from the city.
The judge also questioned, why the encroached railways land could not be taken back so far? On Jan 11, he sought details of the Pakistan Railways and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board’s (KWSB) retrieved land during the operation.
Justice Ahmed also directed removal of nurseries from footpaths and ordered demolition of marriage halls and cinema halls built on encroached land.
The apex court judge also ordered removal of encroachments from Aziz Bhatti Park and the city’s other parks and transfer of the set ups of social organizations from footpaths to appropriate place.
He remarked that the footpaths are for pedestrians and should be used for that purpose only.
Last year, on Oct 27, the SC directed Mayor Karachi Wasim Akhtar to remove all encroachments from the city’s amenity plots and pavements with the help of law enforcement agencies and granted a 15-day deadline to city authorities for compliance of its orders.
The ongoing anti-encroachment drive by Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) has moved towards the decades old book market, popularly known as Urdu Bazaar.