SHC directs KMC, construction firm to ensure protection of temple structure

September 22, 2014 Off By Web Desk

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Tuesday directed Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) and a construction firm to take immediate measures for protection of the structure of 150-year-old Sheeri Ratneshwar Mahadev Temple in Clifton from damages that might result from construction of a flyover in close proximity to it.

Member provincial assembly Mukesh Kumar Chawla and All Pakistan Hindu Panchayat’s secretary general have approached the court seeking its directives to provincial authorities for safeguarding the historic building.

Counsel for petitioners submitted that Bahria Town has undertaken a project from the Park Tower traffic intersection to the AT Naqvi Roundabout, which included the construction of a flyover in front of Park Towers and the underpasses near Kothari Parade in Clifton.

He said that their existed unrest among the Hindu community about the construction that had posed a serious threat to the foundation of 150-year-old Sheeri Ratneshwar Mahadev Temple. “Historical temple which was a national heritage was put in danger by commencement of the project.”

Counsel submitted that as a result of excavation near the temple site, 40-feet-deep ditch was left open, which might cause collapse of old structure in case of rains which are expected next month.

He said that retaining walls are required to be built in order to protect the temple from damages. He apprehended that if urgent repairs were not carried out, walls of temple might collapse putting in peril the building, lives of worshipers who visit the temple as well as the religious idols and symbols.

During preliminary hearing, a division bench headed by Chief Justice Maqbool Baqar had directed authorities concerned to ensure full and effective safety and security of the subject structures under the supervision of qualified and reputed civil engineer.

On Tuesday, Syed Sultan Ahmed counsel for KMC and Khalid Jawed Khan counsel for Bahria Town undertook to implement the court’s earlier order to preserve the subject structure from all kind of damages and destruction.

In the light of their undertaking, the court adjourned the hearing of case to October 3 and directed them to place on record the progress report.

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