KARACHI: Campaigns launched by city administration against encroachers of the city’s most frequented Preedy Street appear to have fizzled out every time due to lack lustre attitude of the law enforces and perhaps more so of the persistence reflected by the law violators.
No crackdown against the law violators mainly comprising rickshaw and qingqi drivers alongwith push carts’ owners and those of makeshift stalls could really deter them as they knew and do know the way out, that is either greasing the palm of people concerned or resorting to violence at the expense of unassuming passers-by.
It was only recently that the flow of busses and mini busses, moving from different parts of the city via Bohri Bazaar stretch to Frere Road was diverted to Karam Ali Talpur Road so as to reduce the pressure that had severely effected smooth and easy traffic flow causing great inconvenience to the commuters, shoppers, bonafide and tax paying shopkeepers and the motorists moving towards down town.
This administrative arrangement was soon followed by a fresh attempt to remove encroachers doing roaring business of wide range of consumable items under the sun and amidst heavy traffic flow.
Action was also taken against those responsible for the mushroom growth of unauthorized rickshaw and qingqi stands at short distances, right from KMC charged parking plaza to electronic market, but to no avail.
“You can still see rickshaws or a rickshaw waiting for potential commuter at crucial turnings not only disrupting traffic flow but holding every chance of severe mishap,” said Abdul Shaikh, a government employee who uses the road to reach Sindh Secretariat.
He complained that traffic cops, who are already few on the road appear to be silent spectator when any of the rickshaw driver turn violent if asked to move his vehicles or told that he was breaching an essential traffic law.
“On the contrary these hardened drivers resort to bad mouthing and at times even physically abuse the complainant,” said Shakir Ali.
Shopkeepers of nearby markets, including Empress Market, Bohri Bazaar, Zaibunisa Street etc said the mess created by makeshift stall and push cart owners besides the rickshaw and qingqi mafia has deprived them of their clients and customers.
“People naturally want to avoid the rush and they have other options,” said Abdul Khalid, proprietor of a tapestry shop.
General public, however were wary of these shopkeepers too who have not only extended their shops upto the pavements but at times even sublet the space besides occupying major portion of roads to park their vehicles.
“Why can not these shopkeepers park their vehicles at the nearby parking plaza,” enquired Zia Rizvi.