The misuse of public space by the encroachment mafia is increasingly becoming a cause of worry for local residents in the historical Walled City in Lahore. Traffic gridlocks and parking woes have further exacerbated the situation. In order to clear the mess, the Lahore High Court has been approached that has asked the Walled City of Lahore Authority to submit a reply in this regard. The mafia is infringing upon the rights of residents in Walled City, who are helpless and daily suffer from the agony of passing through their streets and roads. Various businesses established on road sides mar the look of historical buildings. Thus blockage of roads and traffic jams create havoc for the commuters all day long. The people remain stuck in traffic jams for hours due to the blockage of the roads.
The misuse of footpaths and roadsides cannot be allowed at the cost of inconvenience to hundreds of residents living in the Walled City. Moreover, the area has a great attraction for local and foreign tourists as such the concerned authorities need to pay attention to preserving these streets instead of allowing them to become a victim of the avarice of encroachers. For local residents, it is becoming unbearable day by day. It seems that anti encroachment laws do not exist in the country. The vexing problem needs a solution on an immediate basis. There is a big question, why have the concerned authorities closed their eyes to this huge problem faced by the citizens for so many years. Why do they not object to these ever increasing encroachments or is that they just do not care about citizens’ rights? It is the Punjab government’s responsibility to intervene and take necessary measures to keep Walled City streets, walkways and open space free of encroachments. The city administration and traffic police need to come down hard on such powerful encroachers and retrieve the land being used illegally. It is high time that the concerned authorities should come to the rescue of the public and save them from this daily nuisance.