Haleem, 69 others booked for disrupting anti-encroachment drive

KARACHI (TLTP): Opposition Leader in Sindh Assembly and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader, Haleem Adil Sheikh has been booked for causing disruption during an anti-encroachment drive carried out at his Malir farmhouse a day prior, police confirmed Sunday.

Karachi police said the first information report (FIR) against Haleem Adil Sheikh included clauses pertaining to disturbing peace, financial loss to government property, assault on government employees, attempted murder, intimidation, and interference in the government’s work.

At least 70 people, including the PTI lawmaker, were named in the case filed at the Memon Goth police station on behalf of Muhammad Ayub, a resident of Karachi’s Korangi neighbourhood.

The case was filed after an operation against Sheikh’s family farmhouses in Karachi on Saturday in which anti-encroachment teams encountered resistance, with protesters throwing stones at government staff and smashing windows of their vehicles.

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah defended on Sunday the demolition of dozens of farmhouses reportedly owned by PTI leader and Sindh Assembly Opposition leader Haleem Adil Shaikh.

Speaking to the media in Dadu, he said the action was taken on the Supreme Court’s order. Farmhouses and commercial activities can’t be allowed on the state land leased for agriculture and poultry farming purposes, he said. Besides, he added, the 30-year lease had already expired.

“If someone wants to give the anti-encroachment drive political colour, it is one’s wish,” Murad said. Unfortunately, he said, PTI leaders not only spoke ill of him but also his late father.

“Removing encroachments is not political revenge,” he maintained, adding the provincial administration had to raze even age-old villages on the court directives.

In this regard, the Sindh Information and Local Government Minister Nasir Hussain Shah said the operation against encroachments was being conducted at the orders of the Chief Justice of Pakistan.

“Haleem Adil Sheikh was crying hoarse that ac-tion had been taken against his family,” Shah noted.

Meanwhile, a press statement released from Malir DC office said that 548 acres of government land illegally occupied in Malir has been retrieved so far during the ongoing operation. It said that the operation against the land mafia is being carried out following the orders of the Supreme Court with the help of the revenue officer, anti-encroachment force and the police.

Meanwhile, spokesman of the Sindh government Murtaza Wahab while talking to the media in Karachi said that forestation is being promoted by carrying out urban forestation and planting trees at the retrieved state land across the province particularly in Karachi city.

He said one hundred thousand plants have been planted at Kidney Hill in Karachi to make the area green, clean and beautiful. He announced that in the next tree plantation campaign being started this month, the focus will be on planting trees at eighteen main roads in Karachi city under Karachi metropolitan corporation to beautify these roads. He said besides elm trees fruit trees are also being planted to make the city beautiful.