The Sindh High Court has directed a petitioner to satisfy the court about the maintainability of his petition for reclaiming of 12 acres land in Malir that was requisitioned during the Second World War in 1942 by the British rulers.
The direction came on a petition of Darayas T Sethna who submitted that their family property comprising 12 acres was situated in Deh Gangiaro and it was requisitioned in 1942 by then British government for the purpose of using the land for the World War II.
The petitioner submitted that their land requisitioned by the British continued to be used by the British government even after the end of the war and the same was also still being retained by the ministry of defence that neither returned the land nor gave compensation for it.
He said the director military land and Cantonment Board Malir had been told by the revenue authorities that the subject property was owned by the petitioner’s predecessor Kaikahosro Rustom Irani. He said that military authorities were continuously being approached to de-requisition the petitioner’s family land and pay Rs0.20 per square yard since 1942 for retaining the same.
Federal and provincial law officers filed comments on behalf of the ministries of defence and revenue department respectively submitting that the relief sought in the instant petition could not be secured under the Article 199 of the Constitution.
They submitted that the petitioner wanted to seek declaration with regard to the right and title of the land for derequisition of the subject land on the premise that the purpose for which it was acquired at the time of the Second World War had been served.
They said the subject land was now being used as the Landhi Air Field and thus such a request was also misconceived. A division bench of the SHC headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi observed that the petitioner had alternatively prayed for compensation, which, according to his counsel, had not being paid. The SHC directed the petitioner to come prepared and satisfy it about the maintainability of the petition.
KDA restrained from action
Meanwhile, the SHC directed the Karachi Development Authority (KDA) not to take any adverse action against private respondents who owned a residential plot near to an amenity land in the Gulistan-e-Jauhar area.
The direction came on a petition against illegal conversion of amenity land meant for establishment of a mosque into a residential plot. The counsel for some residents had filed an application submitting that the KDA authorities under the guise of such proceedings wanted to take coercive action against the allottees of residential plots who were not residing on the amenity plot.
He requested the high court to restrain the KDA from taking any adverse action against the applicants. The SHC directed the KDA not to take any coercive action against the private respondents without issuing any show cause notice and providing opportunity of being heard.