Caretaker govt plans to regularise illegal construction across Sindh

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KARACHI: In what is being viewed as a move beyond its mandate, the provincial caretaker government has hinted at regularising all illegally constructed buildings in the metropolis, it emerged on Monday.

Illegal construction of multi-storey buildings on small residential plots has become a lucrative business in Karachi and other parts of the province. The superior courts have been hearing many petitions against the menace and in one such case the apex court had ordered demolition of the 15-storey Nasla Tower and refused to regularise it for being illegally constructed.

However, Caretaker Local Government Minister Mubin Jumani, who himself is a builder, on Monday ordered the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) to conduct a complete survey of the illegally constructed buildings in the province, including Karachi, where people were living and submit a report within 48 hours.

In a meeting with a delegation of the Association of Builders and Developers (Abad), he said that the only agenda of the provincial caretaker government was to provide maximum relief to the people.

Unauthorised buildings to be regularised after third-party survey, LG minister tells Abad

“We will take steps to regularise all such illegal buildings where people have settled under the law by having a third-party survey of these buildings,” he told the delegation.

Recently, the caretaker minister had imposed a complete ban on new constructions and approval of building maps and layout plans across the province.

The Abad delegation, led by its former chairman Mohsin Sheikhani and chairman Altaf Tai, raised the issue of the ban during the meeting.

Minister Jumani told the delegation that the ban on new constructions and layout plans was imposed for “only a few days” to prevent the city from becoming a concrete jungle.

He said that the caretaker government was going to formulate a policy in this regard, which could promote legal constructions and prevent illegal constructions, said a press release issued after the meeting.

He said that the provincial government wanted to create a mechanism in the construction sector in the province so that it could generate more revenue for the government.

The LG minister said that all the authorities, including the SBCA, had been instructed to conduct a complete survey of the illegal constructions that have been established in the city and the province and submit a report within 48 hours.

He said that the caretaker government was going to constitute a committee comprising representatives of builders, SBCA, Karachi Development Authority, Malir Development Authority, Lyari Development Authority and other stakeholders so that they could give consensus proposals with regard to the construction industry.

The Abad chairman assured the minister that he would submit his proposals in two-three days. He urged the minister to remove the ban on building plans in the light of Abad’s proposals.

Speaking on the occasion, LG Secretary Najm Shah said that the government would try its best to introduce a comprehensive policy in consultation with all stakeholders in a week.

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