KARACHI: Following orders issued by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) officials razed a building near Aladin Park in Gulshan-e-Iqbal on Monday night.
They arrived with heavy machinery on Rashid Minhas Road and launched the operation to raze the under construction blocks of Royal Park Apartments. They first weakened the pillars of a ground-plus-one storey structure, and later demolished a six-storey building.
Reportedly, the land on which the apartment complex was being built was government property and had been handed over to a welfare agency. The land was then, allegedly allotted through an illegal process and sold out to someone else.
Following the destruction, a large number of people who had booked apartments in the residential complex gathered in the area and expressed their anger over the demolition. The enraged citizens said that the relevant authorities didn't intervene when the project was being launched and demanded to know who had allowed the builder to construct the residential complex. They deemed it unfair of the authorities to declare the construction illegal after several people had invested millions of rupees in its construction.
"I booked the apartment for Rs7 million and have already paid Rs4 million," said a citizen, who asked not to be named, adding that he had found the booking office closed and the agents missing when he arrived there after hearing about demolition. Meanwhile, another affected citizen claimed that he had made inquiries with all relevant authorities about the legal status of the project before booking the apartment and all of them had responded positively.
Illegal marriage halls were also razed by the demolition squad in Malir Town. Several structures including partition walls, precast and reinforced concrete roofs were demolished in areas including Jamshed Town, PECHS, Khudadad Colony, Aamil Colony, Fatima Jinnah Colony, Soldier Bazaar, Garden West, Liaquatabad Town, Nazimabad, Gulberg Town and other areas.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 26th, 2020.