KARACHI - Following the directives of Provincial Minister for Local government Jam Khan Shoro, Karachi Development Authority (KDA) on Thursday lodged an FIR with Boat Basin police station against KMC officers for demolishing wall of a Benazir Shaheed Park in Clifton.

The FIR was registered against Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) officers, Nazeer Lakhani, Director Anti-Encroachment, Director Parks Afaq Mirza, KMC contractor Liaquat Qaimkhani and 12 others on the complaint of KDA Parks Director Ikhlaq Baig.

Ikhlaq Baig told The Nation that Clifton is a scheme of Karachi Development Authority and its parks were also the property of KDA.

“KMC has no right to take any sort of action and carry out any activity in the housing scheme,” he said, and added, “But KMC officers on Wednesday demolished a wall of Benazir Shaheed Park without taking KDA on board.”

On the other hand, Karachi Mayor Wasim Akhtar said this was a worst example of bad governance in Sindh that an FIR was registered against officers for removing encroachments from park’s land.

“Complaints about encroachments in the park were being received from the citizens for the last many months and also that the park’s condition was very bad,” he added.

Wasim argued that the FIR should have been registered against those who were encroaching upon the park’s land or those who were supporting the encroachers.

He said the park should be a model park because it had been named after Benazir Bhutto.

The mayor said this park was handed over to Sindh Government with 50 gardeners, whose salaries were paid by the KMC, but no work was done in this park.

He said as a Karachi mayor, he requested Asifa Bhutto Zardari to take action against those people who wanted to encroach upon the park’s land; the park named after her mother.

He said in view of failure of the Sindh government in maintaining and renovating this park, it was decided to cancel the permission which granted to the Sindh government.

He further said, “We want to save the park and protect the land of KMC.”

It is worth reminding here that Minister for Local Government Jam Khan Shoro on Wednesday had ordered registration of an FIR against KMC officers over the issue.

This was despite the fact that the mayor had claimed that the action had been taken after taking the Sindh government on board, and after assurance by Shoro that the provincial government would not stand in the way of KMC’s anti-encroachment drive.