Protesters clash with police during Aladdin park anti-encroachment operation

Demolition being carried out under heavy security, shopkeepers claim no notice was given


Our Correspondent June 15, 2021
PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI:

Protesters clashed with provincial authorities on Tuesday after an anti-encroachment drive was initiated in the Aladdin amusement park area of Karachi's Gulshan-e-Iqbal locality.

The operation was being carried out as per the Supreme Court's directives.

Protests erupted after anti-encroachment officials reached the site to demolish a shopping mall and the Pavillion Club located in the vicinity of the park.

As a result, several local area employees and shop owners were arrested by the police. The law enforcement officials also fired in the air in an attempt to disperse the protesters.

The provincial authorities halted the operation for a short while, but then resumed the demolition work after a sizeable contingent of police was called.

The protesters claimed that the shops had been made in the area 25 years ago and the operation was being carried out without any prior notice.

"We will not leave our place under any circumstances and will not allow the operation to take place," said one of the protestors.

Read more: SC orders commencement of anti-encroachment drive along Gujjar, Orangi nullah

A day earlier, the Supreme Court (SC) ordered authorities to restart work to widen Gujjar Nullahs and the Orangi Nullahs stormwater drains and dismissed the area residents' plea against the anti-encroachment drive and request for compensation.

A three-member bench of the apex court, led by the Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed, heard the cases pertaining to illegal encroachments in the port city and the Karachi Circular Railway at the SC's Karachi Registry.

As the affectees of the Gujjar and Orangi Nullahs anti-encroachment operation protested outside the court premises and demanded a 'house for a house', the apex court annulled all restraining orders against anti-encroachment drives.

 

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