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May 10, 2021

Inclusive Pakistan

 
May 10, 2021

Illegal and unauthorised land acquisition in the name of development and wealth creation is in full swing in Pakistan. Private real-estate developers with institutional backing are doing this with impunity. This phenomenon, however, is a global one. It is ironic that in the process of developing societies, the culture and historical significance of localities and people’s sentiments are ignored. Islamabad is no exception. The city has witnessed haphazard development in the last two decades which has trampled with its natural beauty. It has now become a concrete jungle. Even the prime minister’s recent statement regarding the development of unexplored islands in Sindh is a cause of great concern for the natives. If the proposed development is carried out, local fishermen will be badly affected because such development does not benefit the poor/residents in any way. Also, it will further damage the already fragile relationship between the province and the centre. It is important to mention that mangrove forests provide great protection against floods and high tides. Their removal will have serious consequences.

In order to revert the situation and make the federation strong and inclusive, the following steps are inevitable. The authorities should set up town planning commissions and must improve the working of the existing regulatory institutions such as the CDA, KDA and LDA. This will help develop sustainable cities in Pakistan. The country needs sustainable cities where people’s sentiments and culture and the area’s natural environment are given due importance. Only an inclusive Pakistan will become a strong Pakistan.

Kashif Hakro

Karachi