KARACHI: An anti-encroachment drive to clear the Ziauudin-Karimabad road has been initiated by the District Central Deputy Commissioner (DC) Captain (retd) Fariduddin Mustafa for the expansion of the road on each side.
Up till the second day of the campaign, 180 structures on the 3.5 kilometre-long road were demolished during the anti-encroachment drive that started on Tuesday.
According to the DC, the campaign will continue until the entire road is cleared of illegal structures. “A 1.2km patch of the Ziauddin Road has been cleared, whereas the entire road will be cleared in coming the few weeks,” he added.
The anti-encroachment personnel of the Board of Revenue are also involved in the anti-encroachment drive, while the help of the police is also being sought to avoid any untoward incidents. Encroachments on the road include grocery shops, furniture shops, car painters and other shops.
The structures that have been demolished include a three-storey building, shops and offices. Most of these structures encroached upon 12 to 15 feet from the plotline of a Karachi Development Authority plan from the 1970s, the DC said.
“Encroachment on public places and amenities, such as roads, nullahs and green areas, is illegal and any such structures will be demolished without offering the encroachers any compensation,” the DC vowed, while speaking to The Express Tribune. According to Captain Mustafa, similar anti-encroachment drives will be extended throughout the entire District Central.
“The leases given by Karachi Metropolitan Corporation to the encroachers on public places are void,” he said. The DC added that the encroachments will be cleared in the interest of the residents of the area and motorists who had to face traffic congestion on a daily basis.
“We have been facing resistance since this major anti-encroachment campaign is the first of its kind in the past 30 years.” the DC claimed. However, he said, they will carry on the campaign even though they have been facing pressure and make District Central encroachment-free.
Earlier, he said, the Gujjar Nullah had been cleared from all sorts of the encroachments, which started in July last year and lasted till April this year. According to him, 14,000 structures on the Gujjar Nullah were demolished without any compensation or rehabilitation package to the encroachers because they had built the structures illegally.
Captain Mustafa added that a rehabilitation package of around Rs12 billion for the encroachers was approved in 2007 and had been revised to Rs24 billion, whereas the campaign conducted to clear the nullah was without any compensation by the government.
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