No historical building of Karachi will be given to any institution, declares Shallwani

Updated 17 Sep 2020

Email

A file photo of the city’s iconic Frere Hall. Ex-mayor Wasim Akhtar had handed over management of the building to a ‘Guardians Board’ in 2018. However, with the administrator’s latest decision, this arrangement may be cancelled. —White Star
A file photo of the city’s iconic Frere Hall. Ex-mayor Wasim Akhtar had handed over management of the building to a ‘Guardians Board’ in 2018. However, with the administrator’s latest decision, this arrangement may be cancelled. —White Star

KARACHI: City Administrator Iftikhar Ali Shallwani on Wednesday said that historic buildings of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation would not be given to any other institution as these were assets of the citizens.

“Neither the structure of these buildings could be altered nor could they be given to any other institution,” he said, adding that if any memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed for handing over of any building to other institutions, it would be considered as cancelled in the light of Supreme Court’s directives.

He said that the law department of the city’s municipal administration was taking measures in this regard.

The administrator passed these remarks while visiting Khaliqdina Hall and Library here.

Mr Shallwani said that great nations always took care of their historic assets and preserved their establishments.

He said furniture and other necessities should be provided to the library so that readers could be facilitated. He also asked the Student Welfare Organisation of the Khaliqdina Hall and Library to play its role in making the library fully functional.

Says all MoUs for handing over city’s assets stand cancelled in pursuance of apex court’s directive

The administrator while reviewing the uplift work for the hall, directed the officials concerned to complete the work within six months. He also passed directives for planting trees and renovation of the park inside the hall so that the people could be given a healthy environment.

Mr Shallwani also visited office of the Students Welfare Organisation established in 1951 and appreciated it for assisting needy students for so long. He asked the body to continue this great work.

He also directed officials concerned to hold KMC events at Khaliqdina Hall, Markaz-i-Islami and other KMC structures instead of expensive five-star hotels.

“Organising KMC’s cultural and educational events at these places would not only increase the importance of the places but also help the KMC in saving huge amount,” he said.

Meets German envoy

German Consul General Holger Ziegeler on Wednesday called on Administrator Shallwani at his office and discussed matters of mutual interest.

The administrator received the counsel general upon his arrival and expressed gratitude for visiting the KMC building.

Mr Ziegeler wished him all the luck on taking charge as the city administrator and said that Germany was making investments in different sectors in Pakistan.

Mr Shallwani said that Pakistan was using heavy machinery and equipment made in Germany. “Germany is amongst the world’s most developed countries and both the countries could learn from each other’s experience,” he added.

The administrator said that Karachi had unique importance in the region owing to its geographical situation and it was a gateway for the Middle East and Central Asia.

“There are two ports and an international airport in Karachi while different industrial zones are also contributing to the economy of Pakistan,” he said.

Mr Shallwani said that keeping in view importance of the city, many uplift works were going to be initiated soon to develop its infrastructure. He said that after the development works, the city would continue playing its role as the backbone of the county’s economy.

The German CG expressed best wishes for the projects and said that Karachi had unique importance as it was the biggest city of Pakistan.

He hoped that the city’s people would get better facilities in future.

Published in Dawn, September 17th, 2020