The Association of Builders and Developers (Abad) stopped work on all on-going projects in Karachi in protest against uncertainty over the future of the housing schemes, its chairman, Mohsin Sheikhani, said on Thursday.
In a statement, Sheikhani said that everyone was afraid that their buildings could be demolished in the future. He added that the builders would have to restore confidence of common man and satisfy the investors.
“Tell us from which agency we get permission [for the project] so that there was no action against the builders in the future,” he said, adding: “We have no other choice but to stop work on all projects. We will take our protest to the whole of Pakistan.”
Sheikhani said that it was the government’s job to inspect if there were errors in the project’s licence. He added that Abad would stop work on all residential and commercial projects in Karachi, which jeopardising the investment of Rs900 billion.
He said that the number of approved construction projects in Karachi was 300, adding that the average cost of a project was Rs3 billion or more. Besides, he said, more than 70 subsectors, including steel, cement, bricks, electricity, plumbing and gravel, were also associated with this sector.
The Abad chairman further said that the construction sector provided employment to millions of people and expressed the fear that these people could be rendered unemployed if the work in the construction sector was stopped.
He said that it was the responsibility of the federal and provincial governments to address judicial concerns regarding construction, adding that the attorney general for Pakistan could contact the court to resolve the matter.
Sheikhani added that the overseas Pakistanis had heavily invested in the construction sector in Karachi. In the current situation, he continued, the builders and developers were reluctant to repose confidence in the construction projects even if those were approved by the agencies concerned.
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