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This is apropos a Business Recorder news item “KDA chief expresses his resolve against land grab” carried by the newspaper yesterday. That the business of land grab in Karachi has turned into a big flourishing industry in recent years is a fact.

I’m sure the director general of KDA, Syed Mohammad Ali Shah, must be aware of this grim reality that alone constitutes the most formidable challenge to civic or urban planning.

It is therefore heartening to note that a highly important civic department that has previously played a key role in the overall infrastructural planning and development of this city of teeming millions has been finally jolted into action as things seem to have gone too far.

The entire landscape of Karachi is unfortunately characterized by brazen acts of unlawful encroachments or land grab: roads, streets, parks, spaces alongside railway tracks where unscrupulous elements in connivance with the regulatory officialdom have setup makeshift or permanent structures in clear violation of city’s original master plan.

Karachi has witnessed a gradual advance beyond usual or acceptable limits. The situation underscores the need for urgent steps aimed at arresting the slide.

Jaffar Naqvi (Karachi)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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