SCP orders demolition of Nasla Tower in a week

Officers who approved Nasla Tower construction Revealed

The Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP), in a major development, on Monday has ordered action against the officers who issued construction permits of the illegal 15-storey Nasla Tower in Karachi.

According to the details, a two-member bench of the apex court comprising Chief Justice (CJ) Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Qazi Mohammad Amin heard the case regarding encroachment on the land reserved for a service road in the Supreme Court Karachi Registry. The court annexed Nasla Tower plot as the case property and directed the Nazir for immediate action to the effect

During the hearing, the apex court directed the official assignee of the Sindh High Court (SHC) to take possession of the land of Nasla Tower and stop the sale and also ordered ordered the anti-corruption department to register a case against those involved in approving the building plan.

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The SCP directed the anti-corruption department to initiate departmental and criminal proceedings against the officers involved, while the chief justice also directed the police officials to register a separate case against the officers involved and sought a report from DIG East.

Hearing the Nasla Tower case, Commissioner Karachi Iqbal Memon told the court that 400 labourers were working on the task and five floors have been demolished so far. The apex court directed the Karachi commissioner to use all government resources and complete the demolishing of the building within one week.

Iqbal Memon said that we are dealing with the issues in a peaceful manner by enforcing Section 144 and preventing people from approaching.

Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin said that the problem is that non-state elements are mobilized due to the weakness of the state. The bottom line is that the building is still in its place.

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“You mentioned in your report that there was some intervention in the demolition. Who’s stopping you?” Justice Gulzar inquired. The commissioner said that there had been protests by people and the Association of Builders and Developers (ABAD). “But we dealt with it peacefully.”

A report presented by the commissioner said that the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) interfered in the demolition process and demanded a bribe from the contractor demolishing the tower. The SBCA director general challenged the report. However, the SCP directed Director General (DG) anti-corruption to register a case against DG SBCA.

The court directed the anti-corruption department to submit a report after conducting legal proceedings and investigation and directed the Commissioner Karachi to complete the demolition of Nasla Tower within a week and use all government resources for this purpose.

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During the hearing of the case, the Attorney General requested to ensure implementation of the order for payment of compensation to the victims. The Attorney General said that neither the builder nor the Sindh government was paying compensation to the victims, therefore the land should be ordered to be taken into custody along with the demolition. Nasla Tower Builder has not yet taken steps to pay compensation.

The court, at the request of the Attorney General of Pakistan, directed to take the plot of Nasla Tower into judicial custody immediately and made the return of the plot conditional on compensation.

The SCP has ordered the SHC to take possession of 780 square yards of land over which the Nasla Tower was built and stop its sale. The court also ordered departmental and criminal action against the officers who approved the building plan of Nasla Tower.

The court said that the anti-corruption department should register a case against these officers while the police should register a separate case against the officers involved.

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