Commissioner appointed to inspect alleged temple damages

KARACHI:,,, Sindh High Court (SHC) on Thursday appointed its Nazir as commissioner to inspect the damages caused to 150-year-old temple in Clifton that resulted from construction of a flyover near Abdullah Shah Gazi shrine.

A division bench headed by Justice Irfan Saadat Khan granted the requested of All Hindu Rights Organization for inspection of the temple in order to ascertain the facts regarding threat to temple from construction of flyover in Clifton area.

Ghulam Mustafa Lakho counsel for petitioner submitted that Bahria Town has undertaken a project from the Park Tower traffic intersection to the AT Naqvi Roundabout, which included the construction of a flyover in front of Park Towers in Clifton and the underpasses near Kothari Parade.

He said that mega project was initiated without following the requisite environmental laws and added that their existed unrest among the Hindu community about the construction that had posed a serious threat to the foundation of 150-year-old Sheeri Ratneshwar Mahadev Temple.

“Historical temple and Jahangir Kothari Parade next to it were declared national heritage which were put in danger by commencement of the project.”

He said that ground vibrations arising from excavation for flyover were close to the temple and could cause the collapse of this old structure as it cannot withstand this vibrations. Thousands of Hindu devotees who visit temple will find it impossible to reach the place of worship due to the construction.

He requested the court to direct real estate concern to produce in court Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report on which the project was given go-ahead. The court was also prayed to direct Sindh Culture department to inform the court about measures taken by it to preserve national heritage.

It is pertinent to mention here that construction work on the project involving a flyover and two underpasses had been stopped following the court order issued by a single bench of SHC on the lawsuit filed by Defence Housing Authority (DHA) against the construction for not having Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the project.

Appeals filed by KMC and Bahria Town against the order of single bench were pending disposal in SHC.

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