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KARACHI: The Sindh Assembly Tuesday adopted a resolution asking the PPP government for protection of the already illegally-built residential houses on encroached lands despite opposition’s rejection.

Nida Khuhro of the ruling PPP tabled the resolution on a private members day, urging the Sindh government to chalk out a plan to protect all the previously constructed residential homes made illegally.

But, the opposition called the move a violation of the court’s decision in this regard, as the house adopted the resolution with a majority vote.

Opposition parties also showed concerns that the resolution even ignored to mention the controversial residential Nesla Tower and showed no sympathies with the affected people who lost their houses.

Nida said that the law of the country should be equal for its people and the Sindh government should step up a protection plan to all those constructions built previously without legal procedures. The Sindh government should approach to the concerned forum in this connection, she added.

She said that the people have invested all their hard-earned wealth into such residential projects and there should be an official protection to help safeguard shelters for them.

“The judiciary should reconsider its decision on humanitarian grounds and the Sindh government should support the affected residents,” Nida said that the Sindh government should interrogate those officials who permitted such illegal housing projects.

In response to the resolution, Haleem Adil Sheikh, Opposition Leader in the Sindh Assembly said that the issue has a grave implications and the house should discuss it but those are responsible for the real estate scam should be brought to justice.

GDA’s Muhammad Shehryar Khan Mahar asked the treasury to stop using the house unfairly and the Sindh government should step up inquiry into the scandal.

“This resolution aims to protect those officials who did wrong. Those (legislators) signed on this resolution should be sent to jail,” he said.

Zulfiqar Ali Shah of the ruling party supported the resolution, saying that “if the poor people lost their houses the where will they find shelter.” He said that these residences should be protected on a humanitarian basis.

Until yesterday, lawmakers were being assured by Nasir Hussain Shah of the ruling PPP, of bringing in a resolution on Nesla Tower but today’s move by Nida Khuhro contains not a single word in this connection, MQM’s Muhammad Hussain showed concerns.

“If we pass this resolution, we will go against the Supreme Court,” he warned the PPP legislators that “the Supreme Court decision is totally different.” By this way, he said, the lawmakers cannot adopt this resolution.

No legal action was taken against those officials who tended to tamper the housing rules and let such construction build, he said that the builders, who developed residential projects illegally, were also spared.

“Does Sindh government intend to go against the Supreme Court?” he asked, saying that those legislators signed the resolution have set their face against the country’s apex judiciary. “We condemn this resolution,” he added.

Sindh Information Minister, Saeed Ghani called the opposition legislators “confused” on this resolution, asking them whether they want Nesla Tower should be razed. “Those involved in these illegal constructions should face action,” he added.

He said that the public should bear the brunt of MQM or Syed Mustafa Kamal’s policies who let such illegal occupation for residential projects. “Punishment should be served to those who are responsible,” he said.

This is a humanitarian issue, he asked the opposition to avoid politicizing it. Former City Nazim, late Naimatullah Khan’s petition mentions all illegal occupations; Saeed Ghani said that “if we cannot protect peoples’ shelters then we don’t deserve to be in this assembly”.

PTI’s Khurram Sher Zaman Khan saw the resolution as an attempt to free the officials responsible for the housing mayhem in the city from all legal charges. He tore a copy of the resolution during his speech.

He said that Syed Nasir Hussain Shah called him in about tabling a resolution on Nesla Tower but here is the case emerged differently. “We were waiting for a resolution on Nesla Tower,” he said.

MMA’s Syed Abdul Rashid said that the house on a majority basis is going to adopt a “blind” resolution. He said that there should have been a joint resolution on the issue, instead.

He said that the assembly was ignored in the past in the same issue we while authorities were busy in demolition of Empress Market, and Lighthouse encroachments that left thousands of people affected.

He alleged the Sindh government led by the PPP of dual standards, as ignoring the Nesla Tower affected residents and adopting a resolution for protection of other illegal constructions in the city.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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