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January 13, 2019

Mayor ‘to go to any extent to get Martin Quarters residents ownership rights’

Karachi

January 13, 2019

Mayor Wasim Akhtar has said that he was willing to go to any extent to get the residents of Martin Quarters, Clayton Quarters, Pakistan Quarters, Jehangir Road and Garden East and West get home ownership rights even if his seat was on the line.

Speaking at a news conference on Friday at the KMC office building, Mayor Akhtar said it was a crucial issue for him to get the residents of these localities ownership rights [to the residences allotted to them by the federal government] even if his seat as mayor was at stake.

A large number of residents of these localities were present at the news conference.

According to the mayor, the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation would intervene in the matter at the next court hearing as the issue pertains to KMC and it would go to court for it.

When questioned about the rights of people whose shops and houses have been demolished during the anti-encroachment dive, Akhtar said the campaign was carried out on the orders of the Supreme Court.

When asked about the Rs25 billion development package announced by the prime minister for Karachi, the mayor said he was “completely in the dark about any movement in this regard.”

He said it was an injustice with the people of Karachi that for the past many years, no one from the federal and provincial governments has taken ownership of the city. “Till date, Karachi is facing serious problems such as acute water shortage, power outages, ruined sewerage lines and no public transport.”

He added that even though the city is the economic hub of the country, it lacks any basic civic facilities as nobody is serious about addressing the issue of Karachi.

Appeal to PM

The mayor also appealed to PM Imran Khan that the issue of the residents of Martin Quarters, Clayton Quarters, Pakistan Quarters, Jehangir Road, Garden East & West should be solved on the basis of equality and uniformity as the 575 Katchi Abadis and 26,632 Goths were given 99 years lease and ownership rights in the past.

He said they had asked the PM to constitute a committee under the chairmanship of Sindh governor having non-MPAS, non-MNAs and non-senators of all the members of the political parties who are permanent citizens of Karachi.

The task of the committee may be to hear the association of the retired government servants and other affectees living in these localities and decide the case once for all to the satisfaction of the agonised retired government servants, their widows and children.

Akhtar termed it a human issue as after Independence nearly 7,000 government employees upon migration were allotted hurriedly constructed tin-roofed residential quarters rather hutments by the federal government, in and around, Garden East and Garden West and almost all the distressed employees, even after serving the government on attaining the age of retirement continue to occupy these quarters.

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