Karachi Fish Harbour Authority (KFHA) has broken its silence to hold Fishermen Co-operative Society (FCS) responsible for the continuing EU ban on Pakistan fisheries’ export. “The non serious attitude of FCS functionaries is pushing the fishing sector towards collapse. The prevailing ban on seafood exports to European Union since 2007 is a chronic example,” said Managing Director KFHA Abdul Ghani Jokhio in a letter to FCS and other concerned departments.
Rift between KFHA and FCS has widened on a number of issues particularly the lease payments. The KFHA has been struggling to convince the FCS administration to end violation of lease agreement. The KFHA claims that Rs 183.15 million were outstanding against the FCS under different heads including Rs 81.500 million for water charges, Rs 55 million for maintenance and repair, Rs 50.500 million for ground rent and Rs 6.3 million for electricity charges.
“You [chairman FCS] are also advised to make arrangements for overdue payment of Rs 40.500 million against ground rent, Rs 6.3 million of electricity charges, Rs 81.35 million of water charges [KW&SB] and Rs 55 million of development [maintenance & repair] spent within the area under rental to FCSL [payable under section 18 (2) of KFHA ordinance 1984],” the letter says.
It warns the FCS to pay the outstanding amount totalling Rs 183.15 million to the KFHA within seven days else the authority will be left with only option to revoke the lease agreement and take over all of its facilities. KFHA in its letter also holds the FCS responsible for the existing ban on Pakistan’s seafood export to the EU countries, which is in place since 2007.
The authority also pointed out to violation of lease agreement by the FCS, as construction of a bank has started on the leased plot. “It has been reported that FCS has allowed and handed over the possession of premises under use of post office to a private bank, where construction has been started,” the letter said. It urged FCS to abide by the agreement with KFHA inked on February 24, 2004 made out of court settlement in C.P. No 1183/96 (FCSL) which is part of court’s order.
It alleged the FCS of wilful violation of the agreement clauses by subleasing another area to a private bank within the premises of K-II auction hall. It maintains the FCS has already subleased unlawfully a number of portions which is a clear violation of FCS bylaws and KFHA Ordinance of 1984. It warns the FCS of contempt of court for its “violations”. The KFHA asks the FCS to cancel all its sublease of plots including M/s. Tameer Bank, Control Tower/VHS System, M/S. Kaneshero, M/s. National Bank of Pakistan, Pakistan Post Office, Café Fishermen, etc, besides the recent sublease to a private bank forthwith.