Former cricketer and Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan has condemned the Indian parliamentarians for demanding to demolish Jinnah House. "Indian parliamentarians' calls to demolish Jinnah House unfortunate and disturbing. History cannot be wished away by demolishing buildings," he tweeted today.
Indian parliamentarians' calls to demolish Jinnah House unfortunate & disturbing. History cannot be wished away by demolishing buildings.
- Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 6, 2017
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Mangal Prabhat Lodha last week had demanded that the Jinnah House building be demolished and a cultural centre built in its place.
Lodha, speaking in Maharashtra's Legislative Assembly said, "The Jinnah residence in south Mumbai was the place from where the conspiracy of partition was hatched. Jinnah House is a symbol of partition, and should be demolished."
The grand house built by Jinnah is located in Malabar Hill area in south Mumbai. It is built on 2.5 acres of land and estimated to be worth about USD 400 million. It was home for decades to Britain's Deputy High Commissioner, but mostly fell into disuse after vacated in 1982.
Pakistan has constantly demanded that India either sell or lease the house to its government for use as a consular office.
On March 30, Pakistan expressed concern over the safety of Jinnah House and said India should show respect towards it. Pakistan foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakria said that the property belonged to Jinnah, and that "ownership rights" must be respected. The recent amendments to the Enemy Property Act, denies Indian families of those who moved to China and Pakistan the right to reclaim their properties. The amended law make the Centre the holder of enemy property.