The Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) held a massive anti-encroachment operation on Sunday morning in the Gulistan-e-Zafar Society of the East District to clean up the Manzoor Nullah Colony. The residents of the area protested against the operation and caused obstacles in it.
Heavy equipment is used to destroy large residential and commercial units in the presence of large numbers of officials from law enforcement agencies. The deputy commissioner of the East district has written letters to the director general of Sindh, director of the anti-encroachment force of the Revenue Council, relevant K-Electric officials and several other city agencies regarding providing security and equipment for operations.
In accordance with an order issued by Pakistan’s Supreme Court, anti-encroachment operations are scheduled to be held in the Gulistan-e-Zafar neighborhood in coordination with the KMC from 9am on Sunday until the completion of the task.
According to the letter of the deputy commissioner of the East District, the senior director of the anti-encroachment cell of the KMC will lead the operation under the overall supervision of the assistant commissioner of the East District Ferozabad region.
A sufficient number of police officers have been asked to accompany the anti-encroachment team to avoid any unwanted incidents. KMC has planned operations to ensure the smooth flow of water during the rainy season.
Among the four choking spots that led to the sinking of Sharea Faisal during last year’s heavy rainfall, Gulistan-e-Zafar was identified as one, with the others being Zehri’s House, Noorani Kabab House and Mehmoodabad. The survey report said that encroachment along Mehmoodabad Nullah had blocked rainwater.
Speaking about Sunday’s operation, KMC’s senior anti-encroachment director, Bashir Siddiqui, said that more than 30 of the bungalows had additional sections built that violated rainwater drains.
He said that this includes the servant’s quarters, the garage and the kitchen. He added that according to their measurements, they need 20 feet on either side of the drain.
The operation took place after negotiations were held between the assistant commissioner of Ferozabad and residents of the area. It was agreed that the residents would voluntarily demolish parts of their houses that exceeded the specified limits.
The parking lot of 18 houses in the neighborhood was also demolished by the KMC anti-encroachment team. According to the municipal agency, houses and commercial units located up to 17 feet from the nullah will be demolished. This condition was also agreed upon by the residents.