Heritage Building ‘Jinnah Courts’ | NA Seeks Funds to Transfer Rangers’ HQ

ISLAMABAD: A National Assembly panel on Wednesday, 27 March, called for provision of ‘adequate’ funds to the Sindh Rangers for shifting their headquarters from Jinnah Courts, a historically significant pre-Partition national heritage building in Karachi.

The NA standing committee, which met here with Raja Khurram Shahzad Nawaz in the Chair, also sought details of funds provided to the Sindh Rangers and their distribution to date.

Originally named the Leslie Wilson Muslim Hostel, Jinnah Courts were constructed through the use of donations from citizens as well as provincial local bodies to provide residential facilities to students who came from across Sindh to pursue their studies. Its foundation stone was laid in June 1932, and the building was inaugurated a year later in June 1933. The hostel remained a place of high importance during the Pakistan Movement, with Mohammad Ali Jinnah also having visited. Soon after independence, the building was renamed after Mr. Jinnah.

Responsibility for the building was transferred to the culture department in 1986 and the Rangers shifted their headquarters there (on a temporary basis) in April 1999. Earlier the Rangers headquarters had been housed in the Sheikh Zayed Islamic Centre on University Road, but that had to be vacated when the United Arab Emirates government raised objections to its use by the law enforcement agency and said that the SZIC was meant for educational purposes.

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