MIRPURKHAS - A worker of a hotel at Mirwah Road was seriously injured during the anti-encroachment drive of the Municipal Committee Mirpurkhas (MCM).

Goods of the shops were also damaged during the drive. Hundreds of shopkeepers protested against the action of MCM staff here the other day.

The district administration suddenly launched the anti-encroachment campaign under the supervision of assistant commissioner Mirpurkhas taluka, Arshad Qayyum Barki at MA Jinnah Road, Mirwah Road, Jameel Shaheed Road, Newtown and other areas. During the campaign, the MCM staff misbehaved with the shopkeepers and even hurled boiling milk at the face of Nadim Malik, worker of Usmania Hotel. He sustained serious burn injuries. He was rushed to the emergency of civil hospital where he was admitted in the surgical ward.

The MCM staff also took away the bikes of the local journalists parked at Market Chowk near the National Press Club, Mirpurkhas. The place where motorbikes were parked was not officially declared a no-parking area.

Talking to media, the owner of Usmania Hotel alleged that the staff of MCM including Ali Baloch, Nasir and Khalid barged into his hotel, damaged the goods and beat his worker. On resistance, they threw hot milk on his worker Nadim Malik which severally burnt his face. He said illegal attitude of the MCM staff made this anti-encroachment campaign controversial.

MPA Dr Zafar Ahmed Kamali, zonal in-charge Mujeebul Haq and members of MQM Mirpurkhas zonal committee arrived at the emergency of civil hospital where they met with injured Nadim Malik. They strongly condemned the campaign which was launched without any prior announcement and also condemned the misbehaving of the MCM staff with the peaceful shopkeepers.

Later, hundreds of shopkeepers gathered at Mirwah Road in protest against the misconduct of the MCM staff. They raised slogans against the culprits involved and demanded the authorities to take notice and ensure registration of FIR of injured Nadim Malik against the culprits. They lamented that the administration has made the campaign controversial due to misconduct of the MCM staffers.

Meanwhile, Mirpurkhas DIG Javed Alam Odho has said that district legal empowerment committee (DLEC) Mirpurkhas has been active as it has been decided to provide legal aid to three under-trial poor prisoners of Mirpurkhas including Wazir, Narain and Ahmed. He was speaking at the ceremony of distribution of shields among the members and head of the DLEC Mirpurkhas. The ceremony was held here the other day under the aegis of Advocacy, Research, Training and Services Foundation.

He said he had directed all the SSPs of Mirpurkhas division to be active under the DLEC. He assured that police would avoid taking legal action against the masses on the basis of personal enmity. Mirpurkhas Divisional Commissioner Shafiq Ahmed Mahesar said it was commendable act of providing legal aid to poor prisoners. All the deputy commissioners of Mirpurkhas division would play their role under the DLEC.

Mirpurkhas District Bar Association president Jan Ali Junejo said each year Rs0.2 million were allocated as funds for providing legal aid to the poor prisoners in the district and the DLEC were playing their important role in the society to ensure providing legal aid to the deserving prisoners.

ARTS Foundation chief executive Shahzado Malik said legal aid to the poor prisoners brought a change among hundreds of detained prisoners and now the deserving prisoners were approaching the DLEC through submitting application for free legal aid. Mir Shehzad Talpure advocate, Azhar Abbas, Wajid Leghari, M Bux Kapri and other spoke on the occasion. Shields were also distributed among the DLEC members and activists who gave their services voluntarily.