KARACHI - Mayor Wasim Akhtar said the Supreme Court has cancelled all permissions, leases and rent agreements made by the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation or any other government organisation for doing business on parks, drains or footpaths. “No commercial activities can be carried out on such places now,” he said while talking to a delegation of representatives from different market associations Friday.

All Karachi Tajir Ittehad’s Ateeq Mir and Tariq Road Traders Association’s Muhammad Asad led their delegation to the meeting with the mayor.  “The anti-encroachments campaign was not initiated by the KMC only but all departments concerned joined the operation as the court has made all of us bound to complete the task in fifteen days.  The court orders are being implemented and we don’t want to leave anyone jobless,” he said. Land Committee Chairman Syed Arshad Hassan, Charged Parking Chairman M Mursaleen, E&IP Chairman Saad bin Jaffer and others were also present. The traders assured the mayor of their cooperation in current drive against encroachment, however, they made a request for providing them with an alternate place for business so they could be saved from financial problems.

Atiq Mir said: “We knew the operation was not political but on purely administrative grounds and the mayor was doing historic works. People in Karachi had never even thought of this action against encroachments and it seems that people would themselves removed eighty percent of these encroachments.”

The mayor said he knew the problems of traders and they must be sure that all such shopkeepers who were given space on rent and paying their rent to KMC will be provided with suitable place for business in KMC markets.

He said that the action against encroachments was in the larger interest of the city and all citizens must support this positive step.