Why pay lawbreakers?

June 16, 2019

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APROPOS the editorial ‘KCR evictions’ (June 11) which speaks of evictions along the Karachi Circular Railway’s route in a tongue-in-cheek manner. I would like to ask: why is there a need for the Sindh government to resettle these illegal land occupiers?

Nothing teaches the law better than sticks and guns. This has been a universal administrative principle taught in the ancient laws and our holy book. It has been practised by the prophets and down to the most lenient and democratic countries today.

Failure to adhere to this principle only produces chaos. These people now have the temerity to not only illegally occupy Sindh’s public lands, but to have the audacity to protest against the province’s legal position.

A legally correct action against the occupiers of Sindh’s public land must have the following three components — first, arrest each healthy adult of the occupying families for their illegal occupation under the Illegal Dispossession Act, 2005, Act No. XI OF 2005. Then, in addition to jail time, charge each adult occupier with a fine equal to a market rent of the occupied space for the duration of illegal dispossession of public land. Lastly, the government should take legal action against its employees who took part in the illegal land possession.

The courts must follow the principle of equity, otherwise they will lose jurisdiction.

Syed Shams Naqvi

Lafayette, USA

Published in Dawn, June 16th, 2019