KARACHI: The provincial authorities are all set to demolish the sealed Khurshid Memorial Complex, the headquarters of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan near Nine Zero in Azizabad, on the grounds that it was allegedly built on an amenity plot, it emerged on Saturday.

The temporary headquarters of the MQM-P, which is a coalition partner to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government at the Centre, is currently housed in a multi-storey building in Bahadurabad. The party had been asking the current and former governments as well as certain quarters to return its sealed offices and allow it to continue its normal political activities.

On the instructions of Central Deputy Commissioner Taha Saleem, who is also the administrator of District Municipal Corporation-Central, a letter dated Sept 16 was written to the Karachi Development Authority (KDA) by the additional DC regarding “restoration of parks and amenity plots in the light of orders of the Supreme Court”.

It said: “The district administration is trying its best to remove illegal encroachment within the whole district with the coordination of district police as well as other departments/land owning agencies.”

The letter, which mentioned nine plot addresses, including the one where Khurshid Memorial Complex is built in Federal B Area Block 8 (Azizabad), asked the KDA to “ensure the plots may be used in their original purpose of allotment”.

“The district administration will provide all sorts of necessary administrative support, as and when required to remove any encroachment and to maintain law and order situation,” the letter concluded.

While the language used in the letter was vague as it did not name either Khurshid Memorial Complex or demolition, the sources said that all arrangements had been finalised to demolish the MQM-P headquarters building that had been sealed since Aug 22, 2016 following an unannounced ban on MQM founder Altaf Hussain.

However, no official in the provincial government was willing to speak on the issue. “You know, these matters are way above our reach,” said a senior government official when approached for comments.

Quoting DC-Central, reports aired on different TV channels said that the MQM-P headquarters was illegally built on a piece of land actually meant for a medical centre.

Published in Dawn, September 18th, 2022

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