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Nasla Tower owners to refund residents in three months: SC

Top court ordered its demolition on June 16

SAMAA | - Posted: Jun 19, 2021 | Last Updated: 2 months ago
SAMAA |
Posted: Jun 19, 2021 | Last Updated: 2 months ago

Photo: SAMAA TV FILE

Nasla Tower’s owners have to refund its residents in three months, the Supreme Court has ordered in the case of the illegally constructed residential building on Karachi’s main artery, Sharae Quaideen.

“The owners of the tower shall refund price of shops/residential units and other areas sold by them in any form to the registered owners within a period of three months,” the court said in its written verdict released on Saturday. “In case of delay, the claimants can claim mark-up/profit at the bank rate together with damages.”

A three-member, headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, had ordered its demolition on June 16 after dismissing the review petition filed by the owners.

The verdict said that there is “no denial” that the plot was expanded illegally. The original plot was 780 square yards but the tower was built on 1,044 square yards. “A service road has been encroached on and the tower exists on an area in excess of what was originally leased.” It has been constructed on encroached land.

The Karachi commissioner has been instructed to take possession of it, ensure that people living in the building vacate it, and start its demolition. He will have to submit a compliance report at the next hearing.

The top court has issued a notice to the authorities on November 8, 2011 to examine the legality of the tower.

The mukhtiarkaar of Ferozabad submitted a report on January 21, 2021. He claimed that Sindhi Muslim Cooperative Housing Society had illegally increased the size of the plot by alloting the land reserved for a service road.

The former Karachi chief commissioner agreed to allot the land strip on both sides of the main Karachi-Malir road in front of the land on payment of the market price, the mukhtiarkaar said.

The Nasla Tower is located at the intersection of Sharae Faisal and Sharae Quaideen. One apartment roughly costs Rs30 million.

History of the land

  • December 23, 1950: A 780 square year land, which was a part of the Stratchen Quarters, was allotted to a man named Nusratali. After his death, the plot was transferred to his widow Mustafai Begum.
  • March 12, 1955: She entered into a lease agreement with SMCHS.
  • December 12, 1957: The main road, which is 289 feet wide, gets realigned and its width was reduced to 240 feet and an excess of 40 feet (20 feet on each side) was allotted to SMCHS. This area was then allotted by SMCHS to Mustagai Begum, expanding her plot from 780 square yards to 1,044 square yards. No lease or other agreements, however, proved that the expansion was legal. On her death, the plot of inherited by her legal heirs.
  • January 6, 2004: Karachi’s district government allowed the conversion of all residential plots on Sharae Faisal for commercial use.
  • January 23, 2007: Mustafai Begum’s heirs apply to change the nature of the plot and their request gets approved.
  • 2015: The owners of the Nasla Towers purchase the land.

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