Karachi: The chronic civic issues of traffic jams on main roads stays as some selective roadside encroachments are left untouched during drives to remove these squatting.
The Main University Road is a glaring example of this selective approach, where the anti-encroachment squads removes Patharas of petty vendors but leave spacious roadside encroachments of eateries and restaurants untouched. On the instructions of Administrator Karachi Rauf Akhtar Farooqui a squad of KMC anti-encroachment taskforce led by their chairman Bilal Manzar and director anti-encroachment Mazhar Khan carried a big operation on the Main University Road from Safoora Chowrangi to Karachi University and removed dozens of encroachments. However, local residents say some crucial and big encroachments were left untouched during this operation.
They said the eateries and restaurants that have occupied big areas of service roads near Mosamiyat Chowrangi evaded razing action of the anti-encroachment squads. These encroachments are still hindering the smooth flow of traffic on the busiest part of this road near the Mosamiyat Chowrangi. The service road of the junction of Main University Road and Jauhar Road is occupied from both sides and these encroachments are left untouched. The service road of the junction of Main University Road with Jauhar Chowrangi Road is occupied by a marketing office of an apartment project. Resultantly, traffic going to Jauhar Chowrangi Road from Safoora Goth side faces severe traffic jams.
As the icing of the cake a structure of some watchtower is built on the turning of the junction, blocking the traffic flow. On the opposite side of the road junction is occupied by a restaurant, where they had constructed kitchens and other facilities on the service road, erecting tents there and placing furniture for their customers, who dine there. Due to occupation of this whole section of service road the traffic coming from Jauhar Chowrangi to Karachi University side faces severe problems. A nearby gas station is also a hindrance in smooth traffic flow and two to three lanes of the road are blocked by long lines of vehicles especially on the next day of CNG closure schedule.
Other encroachments of eateries and restaurants from Mosamiyat Chowrangi to Safoora Goth at Jauhar Complex and other sites are also left untouched during the anti-encroachment operation from the Safoora Chowrangi to Karachi University. The citizens regret this selective approach of removing encroachments would not help in solving the issue of traffic jams.
A Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) official on condition of anonymity said the operation against illegal encroachments between Safoora Chowrangi to Karachi University is still ongoing. They have only completed just its phase one and the remaining encroachments including roadside restaurants would be removed in the next phase, as the government has given strict instruction to remove roadside encroachments completely.