KARACHI: The Karachi administrator, his predecessor and another official appeared before the Supreme Court on Friday to tender an unconditional apology for their absence during the hearing of a contempt plea relating to unauthorized constructions on an amenity plot.
A three-member bench, headed by Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali, directed administrator Hashim Raza Zaidi, former administrator Muhammad Hussain Syed and former district West’s administrator, Asim Khan, to submit in writing why they could not appear in court despite issuance of notice.
They were also told to submit their respective reports within a week, explaining why unauthorised constructions were allowed to be raised on a park’s premises.
On Thursday, the apex court had issued bailable warrants for the arrest of city officials for their absence and police were ordered to produce them in court on Friday.
Lawyer Syed Jawad Haider had taken the city municipal officers to court for allegedly committing contempt of the court’s order.
He submitted that he had filed a petition with the Sindh High Court to order the local government authorities to remove illegal encroachment from the 711-square-yard land of an amenity plot, where Baloch Park was established in Ranchhor Lane in 2007.
He maintained that the high court had also stayed construction of the Khursheed Begum IT Centre on the same plot, but later the matter was taken to the apex court.
On October 23, 2008, the SC bench disposed of the case when officials from the local government’s parks department gave the assurance that illegal constructions would not be allowed on the park’s land.
The unauthorised constructions, however, started re-emerging in January this year, he alleged.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 20th, 2013.