The Defence Housing Authority (DHA) in Karachi has served a notice to the owner of the house where Mustafa Kamal is residing with his comrades. The notice was issued due to Kamal’s illegal involvement in political activities.
DHA by-laws do not permit residents to host any political activities in residential areas. A security plan was enforced in 2011 to close down offices of political parties, remove pickets of private security guards outside homes, and ban the political activity in the society.
DHA administrator Brigadier Zubair Ahmed told that political activity at Kamal’s house and placing of posters and banners was in violation of the authority’s by-laws.
“The owner of the house has been served a notice. We usually give a week to caution them, serve two to three notices, and then take action,” he said, claiming that the action would be taken in accordance with the law.
Upon their arrival in Karachi, former Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) member Kamal and party leader Anis Qaimkhani announced to form their own political party.
The duo picked House 75, the 32nd street in Phase-V, Khayaban-e-Sehar as their residence and party office, which according to Kamal is a rented premise.
Outside the house, large banners inscribed with political slogans such ‘Salute to Mustafa Kamal’ and pictures have been put up. The gate, meanwhile, is adorned with stickers and small posters. The national flag, which has been adopted as the party flag, is seen all around the premises.
Neighbours, though irked by the recent commotion, choose to remain anonymous when complaining. “This was such a peaceful area. Now my son can’t study because of all the noise outside,” said a woman who lives a few houses away.
Young men on bikes are involved in hooliganism, female workers sit on the road, dhol wallahs welcome hordes of supporters, and people park their vehicles in front of houses which cause a traffic gridlock, complained residents.
Female residents said they have stopped going to their terraces and balconies as men stare at them while water tankers and domestic servants are told to use alternative routes as they are not allowed to enter the street from the point near Kamal’s house.
The Rangers said that they were helpless to do anything according to a resident.
The residents are also disturbed by the large presence of media. A number of DSNG vans are parked outside their houses 24/7.
Last week, some residents also protested outside Kamal’s house and say they have delivered Kamal a letter regarding their complaints, which he has yet to answer.
The provincial lawmaker from the area, Samar Ali Khan of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, said there should be no inconvenience to residents and all political activity should be done away with.
When contacted, Kamal’s spokesperson Iftikhar Alam said they had received no such notice from the DHA. “If such a notice has been issued, show us the copy or receiving slip.”
Alam, a former leader of the MQM, claimed no neighbours were disturbed by them, and, in fact, they were providing food and water to visitors as well as media personnel.