No notice: Two ‘illegal’ wedding halls demolished in Korangi

Owners lament 50 other halls exist in same area, none were demolished

Our Correspondent February 07, 2016
Owners lament 50 other halls exist in same area, none were demolished. PHOTO: NNI/FILE

KARACHI: No official of the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) knows exactly why they demolished two marriage halls in Korangi Town on Friday.

According to a press release, the SBCA's demolition squad demolished and sealed two "illegal marriage halls" in Korangi Town. "The decision to this effect was taken on the directives of the SBCA director-general, Agha Masood Abbass," it reads.

According to the press release, the SBCA demolished the Green Valley Marriage Lawn, situated on plot numbers F7 and F8 in sector E of the Lucknow Cooperative Housing Society and the Al-Arabia Marriage Lawn on plot number C47 in sector 31-E of the Darul Salam Housing Society. The demolition squad took this action against the illegal construction under the supervision of demolition director Jameel Memon, deputy director Sajjad and Korangi town assistant director Ahsan Edrees.

SBCA spokesperson Farhan Qaiser said that he has no knowledge of the demolition and will only be able to comment on Monday. Whereas Memon responded that only an official of Korangi Town could say why the demolition took place. Sajjad said that they just carried out the order they received. "We never know the reason for demolitions," he said.

Edrees claimed that only the Korangi Town director, Jameela, could only comment on the issue but Jameela did not respond to repeated calls by The Express Tribune.

The owner of Green Valley Marriage Lawn, Irfan, told The Express Tribune that no notice was served to them prior to the demolition. He said that he had been running the marriage lawn for the last 15 years and was renovating it when the SBCA came to demolish it. The land, according to him, has been properly leased and he pays Rs600,000 in rent to the owner every month.

To a question regarding the fact that the marriage lawn has been built on a residential area, he responded that there were more than 50 marriage lawns in the same residential area and asked why only two were demolished. "If my lawn is illegal then all the other ones are as well," he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 8th,  2016.

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