Bilawal vows to ensure relief for encroachment drive affectees

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Bureau Report

KARACHI: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has said the Sindh government will not demolish any illegal property in the on-going encroachment drive until the residents of the building get an alternate accommodation.
The on-going anti-encroachment drive has left numerous across Sindh on the verge of homelessness. According to Karachi Municipal Corporation’s anti-encroachment chief Bashir Ahmed Siddiqi, two of the operations will target encroachments from Café Piyala to Ziauddin Hospital and from Café Piyala to Teen Hatti. The third, he had said, will be carried out at a nullah in New Karachi.
Siddiqi had, however, stressed that residents would not be displaced during the anti-encroachment drive.
Addressing party workers in Karachi’s Nazimabad neighbourhood on Sunday, the PPP chief said, “We will clear the nullah encroachments but with fairness. No one’s homes will be destroyed. If a house must be demolished, people will be provided with an alternate first.”
Bilawal added that it was “after 100 years” that the country had received such calamitous rains. He has said that the party would now begin work in earnest on the development of the city as the “reign of terror” in the province is effectively over. Lamenting the unprecedented destruction in the province caused by the rains, Bilawal said that his party stands by the people in these testing times and will facilitate citizens in every way possible. He acknowledged that the Green Line bus project had adversely affected the city’s drainage system. “I need you all to extend the kind of support you did to Benazir,” he said, speaking of his late mother. “We will secure funds for Sindh from the federal government,” Bilawal vowed.
Moreover, Mr. Bhutto-Zardari was of the view that the Green Line project played havoc with the city’s drainage system, emphasising that the megacity’s drainage system will have to be fixed. He said people suffered a lot due to unpreceden ted showers in the metropolis.
Urging party workers to rally behind him like they used to support slain PPP leader Benazir Bhutto, he said the PPP administration in Sindh will snatch the NFC award and other rights from the Centre with their support.Prime Minister Khan had on Saturday evening announced a ‘historic’ Rs1100 billion financial package for the execution of a transformation plan meant to address the city’s chronic issues and meet its developmental requirements. Briefing media about the Karachi package here at Governor House, he said the federal government is fully aware of the problems being faced by the people of Karachi over the past many years and the PTI government has decided to resolve all perennial issues of the metropolis.