250-acre retrieved from housing society

  • Interior minister announces strict action against land grabbers, facilitators of encroachers
  • Shehryar Afridi instructs land demarcation operation

ISLAMABAD: In its bid to retrieve the state land from unlawful expropriation by housing societies, the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Administration and the Capital Development Authority (CDA) on Saturday retrieved and marked 250 acres (2000 kanals) land in the illegal possession of a private housing society.

The land demarcation operation was undertaken on the instructions of State Minister for Interior Affairs Shehryar Afridi who was briefed by the district administration and CDA high-ups. It is pertinent to mention here that thousands of acres of the state land is under occupation by influential locals and some housing societies along the Kurri Road on the Islamabad Expressway, near the new airport and adjacent areas in Zone III and Zone-IV.

According to sources, the state minister also asked the CDA, now under the Ministry of Interior Affairs after the abolition of the Capital Development and Administrative Division (CADD), and IESCO to name the officers concerned of their organisations who have facilitated the illegal possession of the land in and around the capital.

Soon after assuming of the office, the state minister vowed to rid the capital of encroachments and illegal possession of the state land by locals and real estate developers. Encroachments and illegal occupation of the land has become one of the most pressing issues for residents of Islamabad of late.

In order to put an end to such practices, the joint demarcation by ICTA/CDA revenue staff is underway in many rural areas like Bani Gala, Jamali, Pandora, D-12, C-15/16, E series and other parts to determine exact nature and quantum of the land under illegal occupation. Once it is completed, CDA plans to fence its own land properly and retrieve all land from illegal possession.

In the past, despite various operations by the civic authorities the growth of slums, dhabas, car wash stations and shops by the land grabbers continue at a steady pace. The illegal occupation has enormously increased over the last few years due to increase in population, migration of victims in the wake of natural and manmade disasters in rural and urban areas.

In previous meetings held by top tier of CDA, ICTA on action taken against encroachments and illegal possession and construction on the state land, the participants were briefed that encroachments are directly related to increase in population all across the city. “The ways and means for effective time and efficient watch and ward remain inadequate due to a multiplied load of work,” it read.

Talking to Pakistan Today, CDA spokesperson Safdar Shah said that the operation against illegal encroachments and unlawful possession would not halt till the capital was rid of these faults. “The Enforcement Directorate along with other wings will take part in operations. We’ve rid the encroachments along the Kashmir Highway in two days and will continue our actions well in the future,” he said.


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