SC lifts ban on century-old agri-lab building demolition

SC lifts ban on century-old agri-lab building demolition

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Dhaka, 11 Dec – The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on Monday paved the way for demolition of the century-old laboratory building located in Farmgate’s Khamarbari area of Dhaka city.In response to a government plea, the five-member bench of the Appellate Division, headed by Justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah, who is now performing functions of the chief justice, stayed a High Court order that imposed the ban on demolition and removal of the old building at Khamarbari.
After disposing of a leave-to-appeal filed by the government against the High Court order, the apex court also directed the High Court to clear and dispose of the rule issued by it over the legality of demolition as early as possible.
After the apex court order, Deputy Attorney General SM Moniruzzaman told media that there is no legal bar to demolish and remove the old building at Khamarbari following the Supreme Court order.
He also said that the government would construct a new structure thereafter demolishing the old building.
The Public Works Department (PWD), a construction firm of the country, has started knocking down the two-storey building from late October this year.
Around three years ago, the PWD declared risky the colonial-era structure that used to house the offices of the Cotton Development Board, the custodian of the building, and also the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE). The board shifted its office from there one and a half years ago and the DAE about four years back.
Following the Partition of Bengal, the centre for agricultural extension services was transferred to Dhaka, and the laboratory building was constructed in 1909 to facilitate scientific research on crops.
The PWD authority suspended their demolishing work following the HC order that had on October 31 imposed the ban on the demolition work and issued a rule in this regard.
But, the PWD can start the demolition work following yesterday’s order, Moniruzzaman said. – Staff Reporter

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