Civic responsibility: SHC orders removal of encroachment from Lyari riverbed

Published: January 31, 2016
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The illegal construction has choked the drain, claims the petitioner. PHOTO: FILE

The illegal construction has choked the drain, claims the petitioner. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) has ordered the director of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation’s (KMC) Anti-Encroachment Cell, District Central deputy commissioner and Liaquatabad assistant commissioner to remove illegal constructions from Lyari riverbed.

A division bench, headed by Justice Syed Hasan Azhar Rizvi, passed this direction while hearing a petition against illegal constructions on the land belonging to the drain.

The petition was filed by Shaikh Abdul Rasheed, who had named the provincial chief secretary, the deputy commissioner of the District Central, the director of the KMC’s Anti-Encroachment Cell, the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) and a private person, as respondents.

The petitioner said that a private person, who has encroached upon the riverbed through illegal constructions, is a lease holder of a plot in the area adjacent to Lyari River.

He also said the encroachment has resulted in choking of the storm water drain in the area. “This has caused civic problems to the petitioner and his sister, who reside in the area,” Advocate Ayaz Ali told the judges.

He recalled that the petitioner had on May 15 last year filed a complaint with the SBCA requesting to demolish the illegally raised structures and get the encroachment removed from the drain but an action was still awaited.

During Thursday’s hearing, an SBCA official filed comments, stating they had nothing to do with the removal of the encroachment, as the KMC’s Anti-Encroachment Cell was responsible for demolishing illegal constructions.

In view of the SBCA official’s statement, the SHC bench directed the ordered DC Central, the Assistant Commissioner Liaquatabad and the Anti-Encroachment Cell director to take action for the removal of encroachments in accordance with law.

Adjourning hearing for a date to be later notified by the office, the bench asked them to submit report on compliance of the court order.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 31st, 2016.

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