ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court Tuesday suspended Sindh High Court order to seal and demolish Moon Gardens residential complex in Karachi.

A two-member bench comprising Justice Ejaz Afzal and Justice Umar Ata Bandial heard an appeal of the builder of Moon Gardens Complex against the order of Sindh High Court.

The bench ordered the complex builder Abdul Razzaq Khamosh to deposit security of Rs50 million in cash and Rs50 million bank guarantee in the next 15 days.

The Sindh High Court on September 29 had issued order to seal and demolish Moon Gardens, which is said to have been illegally constructed on the Railways Housing property.

The apex court framed two questions, whether the petitioner on behalf of allotees has locus standi to contest their case and whether any penalty, except demolishing of building can retrieve the dignity of court. The court will consider these questions on the next date of hearing.

During the hearing, Salman Akram Raja counsel for petitioner namely Abdul Razzak Khamosh submitted that they have constructed a building consisting of five towers known as ‘Moon Garden’ over a plot of land measuring 4000 square yards in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Karachi.

He said the building was constructed in accordance with the applicable building regulations regarding height, number of floors, and open space which are covered under the rules of the Sindh Building Control Authority as well as Faisal Cantonment Board Karachi.

The building in question is situated on either sides of boundaries between the jurisdiction of KBCA and CBF laying 30 per cent in cantonment area and about 70 per cent in KBCA. The owner has raised the construction beyond the approval, it is alleged.

Salman Akram Raja also stated that the petitioner completely throw himself before the court to face the consequences over the illegality, which is done by him in the construction of building, adding that we are willing to facing financial penalties.

He however stated that 200 families are residing in the complex and they should not be penalized over the fault of builder, adding he is seeking relief for the people, who would be homeless.

The bench however asked him that how can he plead the case of affectees.

The counsel also referred the SC’s order said that building cannot be demolished on the basis of the fact that the building was constructed beyond the approved plan.

The law provides for consequences other than removal of the building on account of the violations alleged against the petitioner, he added.

Justice Ejaz asked from the lawyer of Sindh building department when someone was violating the law then whether its officials were sleeping, adding their silence at that time show they were also involved.

The counsel of Railway Housing informed that in 2014 people were not living in the complex but now they are saying 200 families are living in it. Justice Ejaz inquired from whether they had filed any application for demarcation at that time and if did not then they would be sentenced.

After the hearing, the Islamabad police along with Sindh police arrested the builder and moved him to Secretariat Police Station in another case.