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August 28, 2018

Judicial commission questions why superstore allowed parking on Lyari River bed


August 28, 2018

Taking note of the parking of vehicles by a superstore in Defence View on the Lyari River bed, the Supreme Court-mandated judicial commission investigating Sindh’s environmental woes has sought explanations from the city police chief, Karachi Development Authority director general and local government department.

In a hearing on Monday, the commission headed by Justice (retd) Amir Hani Muslim observed that it was very strange that the riverbed of Lyari River, which is also a bed of natural drains, was being allowed to be used for parking purposes which appears to be outright illegal.

The commission was informed that customers who visit the superstore use the riverbed as a parking area. The commission then directed the KDA DG, city police chief and local government secretary to appear and explain why the private store owner was given permission to avail the facility.

Notices were also issued to the store owner to appear and explain under which law he had allowed parking outside his facility’s premises instead of providing it within the store’s premises.

The commission also issued notices to the Sindh Building Control Authority director general to explain how the store lacks a parking facility. Regarding affairs of Jamshoro’s town municipality, the local government secretary conceded that financial powers of the chairman and CMO need to be withdrawn for serious irregularities in handling public funds and the deputy commissioner should be given the financial powers to run the affairs of the town committee.

The commission referred the matter to the Anti-Corruption Establishment as prima facie there was enough material reflecting misuse and misappropriation of public money as per the inquiry report submitted by the local government secretary.

The commission directed the ACE director to take up the issue against the persons in conformity with the law and in line with the report of the local government secretary. It also directed that the Sindh government shall issue the appropriate notification of withdrawing the financial powers of the chairman and the CMO immediately and conferring financial powers on the DC Jamshoro forthwith as had been done earlier in the case of DMC Shikarpur.

The commission also directed the task force member to visit sugar mills and submit a report about instalment of treatment plants and distilleries. The commission directed factories to install septic tanks in their respective factories within two months failing which the factories will be sealed.

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