RDA declares 27 housing societies illegal

RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) has declared 27 housing societies including the Airport Housing Society (extension) and the Lawyers Cooperative Housing Society, as illegal and has issued notices to them.

The RDA, while recommending to the additional district collector (revenue) for banni

Logo of the City District Government of Karachi

Logo of the City District Government of Karachi (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

ng transfer of land in respect of these societies, has warned the citizens to refrain from entering into purchase and sale deals of plots in these societies.

According to RDA Planning Director Jamshed Aftab 27 housing societies have been declared illegal for not meeting the requirements laid down in section 12 (5) of 1976 law for housing societies. These societies include Gulshan Ali, Gulf City, Fazal Town, Lake Viesta, alMuslim State, Airport Employees, Gulshan Iqbal, Jinnah Town, Samar Zar, Khianbane Millat, Gulberg Town, Lawyers Cooperative, Interlink Property Center (Khan Builders), Shah Pur Town, Ibrahim Villas, SS Marketing, Sihala Villas, Snober City, Chaudhry Khalid Mehmood, Malik Afaq Extension Airport Housing Society, Palm City, Lawyers Town, Radio Colony and Madinatul Islam Housing Society.

He also said that notices have been served to these illegal housing societies and their constructions, gates and offices have been demolished. A list of these societies has been sent to the additional district collector revenue with the recommendations that a ban be imposed on the transfer of land in these societies.

RDA also said that a report on the illegal societies has been forwarded to the government of Punjab and their cases have been moved to the special magistrate. online Continue reading

Illegal constructions go unchecked

islamabad-rawalpindi freeway

islamabad-rawalpindi freeway (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

RAWALPINDI  – Rampant illegal constructions on New Morgah Road, Adiala Road, High Court Road and in other areas in the jurisdictions of Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) go unchecked, as the concerned authority did nothing more than sending notices to the owners.According to sources, some officials of RDA admit that they could not take any practical action against the constructions without building plans and other illegal buildings due to political pressure. The citizens, talking to INP said that if the RDA officials could take any action due to political pressure or any other reason against the illegal constructions, they must not receive their salaries too from the authority. They said that if an authority was formed just to act against and regulate illegal constructions and its employees were not fulfilling the purpose, an inquiry should be conducted into the matter. Continue reading

Roads, intersections’ naming: Shahbaz approves CDGL’s summary

LAHORE, Jan 30: The chief minister has finally approved a summary of the City District Government of Lahore seeking naming/renaming of various city roads, intersections and interchanges after renowned personalities.

Shahbaz Sharif approved the summary after the CDGL moved it to him through the Lahore commissioner, the secretary Local Government and Community Development and the chief secretary.

Though the CM and top Punjab government officials raised no objections on CDGL’s recommendations, they made slight changes in naming/renaming of some city spots after famous personalities, officials told Dawn here on Wednesday.

They said the authorities kept pending the naming of Shadman’s Fawara Chowk after Bhagat Singh till the decision of a court in Lahore.

“The CDGL had recommended naming/renaming Model Town underpass after Faiz Ahmad Faiz, but the authorities changed it by naming it after Ashfaq Ahmad Khan.

They named the Mall Road underpass after Faiz Ahmad Faiz. Similarly, the CDGL had recommended naming Niazi Interchange after Ikramullah Niazi, but senior officials named it after Bulleh Shah,” said a senior official.

He said the chief minister approved the naming of underpasses at Doctors Hospital, Jinnah Hospital, New Campus, Muslim Town, Ferozepur Road, FC College, Jail Road, The Mall, Dharampura, Mughalpura, Harbanspura and Burki Road (at GT Road) after Chaudhry Rehmat Ali, Chaakar-i-Azam Rind, Khushhal Khan Khattak, Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai, Liaquat Ali Khan, Justice AR Cornelius, Waris Shah, Ashfaq Ahmad Khan, Husain Shaheed Soherwordi, Habba Khatoon, Joginder Lal Mandal and Col Mirza Hasan Khan Gilgiti, respectively.

He said the suggestion to name the Model Town underpass after Faiz Ahmad Faiz, the Niazi, Ravi, Mahmood Booti and Babu Sabu interchanges after Bulleh Shah, Ustad Daman, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Sadequain, respectively, was also approved.

Similarly, the naming/renaming of the Saggian bridge after Justice AR Kayani, Akbar Chowk (Township) after Jalaluddin Akbar, 7-Up Chowk (Gulberg) after Waheed Murad, Hamdard Chowk after Hakeem Muhammad Saeed, Cooperative Chowk after Allama Rasheed Turabi, Fort Road after Maulana Abdul Qadir Azad, Istanbul Chowk after Patras Bukhari and Qadhafi Stadium Road (Main Gate to Liberty) after Hafeez Kardar was also approved.

Before this, the official said a sub-committee as well as a main steering committee of the Dilkash Lahore Project had recommended naming/renaming these important city spots after famous figures following extensive debates/discussions in various meetings.

“While recommending the name of Fawara Chowk (Shadman) after Bhagat Singh, steering committee chairman Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday (retired) quoted remarks from Quaid-i-Azam’s Sept 13, 1947, speech in which he too appreciated Bhagat Singh,” the official said.

He said had someone avoided challenging naming of Fawara Chowk (Shadman) after Bhagat Singh in the court, the CM and other higher authorities would have approved it as well.

The official said the CDGL had sent another summary to the CM for approval seeking naming/renaming of the GT Road Interchange, Old Club Road, Main Shadman Chowk (Jail Road), Behkeywal Chowk, Model Town Park Roundabout and Kutchery Chowk after Sher Shah Suri, Hashim Khan, Habib Jalib, Waris Mir, Hafeez Jalandhari and Prof Dr Nazeer Ahmad, respectively. “It is hoped that the CM will approve this summary as well,” he added. Continue reading

25 illegal structures demolished

English: One of the famous roads in Rawalpindi...

English: One of the famous roads in Rawalpindi, the Murree Road (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rawalpindi

The Enforcement Cell of Rawal Town Tehsil Administration (RTTA) during its ongoing operation demolished more than 25 illegal structures, both residential and commercial.

The RTTA launched the operation on the directions of Administrator Saif Anwar Jappah.

According to the official spokesman, senior public relation officer Tahir Mahmood Khan, the operation strategy included action against building violators and against those who have no building plan but have made constructions both residential and commercial.

Prior to the operation, RTTA Administrator Saif Anwar Jappah issued notices to the violators directing them to approach the civic body for regularisation of their building plan and illegal construction in accordance with the Punjab government act.

A number of residential and commercial building owners following the directions approached the RTTA and got their building plans approved and regularised. During this process, the administrator directed the concerned authorities of enforcement cell not to charge penalties but claim building and regularisation fees from those who are approaching the civic body for regularisation of their building plans. The campaign helped RTTA to earn huge revenue amounting to approximately Rs15 million in a period of just two months.

Similarly, the operation was carried on against those violators who did not abide by the orders of the RTTA administrator. Over the last two months, enforcement cell sealed and demolished more than 25 residential and commercial buildings who had made illegal constructions in different parts of Rawalpindi city and its adjacent areas. Huge penalties have been imposed against the violators, the spokesman informed.

Similarly, RTTA has also issued 35 more notices to the illegal constructors of buildings residential and commercial. In all 15 illegally constructed buildings have been sealed till now, Tahir Mahmood said.

The report of operation against violators is submitted to the Punjab chief minister who directed the city district government for action against violators of the law, he said. Continue reading

Non-allotment of alternative plots resented

RAWALPINDI  – Residents of Thalla Syedan have voiced strong protest against non-allotment of alternative plots by Capital Development Authority (CDA) and Pakistan Housing Authority (PHA).

“Our village’s land was acquired in 2005 by the Land Requisition Collector. CDA and Housing Foundation Scheme contractors occupied their cultivatable land without providing alternative plots in defiance of court’s orders. The high court had issued orders that permanent residents of the village be allotted substitute plots within this village. But CDA and PHA nexus have deprived us of alternative plots, said a group of residents of Thalla Syedan.

The report evolved by the commission runs contrary to the facts, which has been challenged in Islamabad High Court, they added.

They demanded of CDA to allot them alternative plots otherwise they would not allow the development work to take place. Continue reading

Shahbaz orders crackdown on land mafia

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Tuesday ordered all divisional commissioners to take stern action against land grabbers across the province. The CM had also taken strict notice of illegal grabbing of 400 kanals of land owned by an expatriate Pakistani in Donga Bonga (Bahawalnagar). He directed the Commissioner Sahiwal Division Barrister Nabeel Awan to submit a report after probing the matter. Continue reading

Demo against plan to demolish colony

LAHORE, Jan 28: Scores of residents staged a protest demonstration against the Punjab government for planning demolition of as many as 500 houses in Chaudhry Colony Katchi Abadi (LOS-Shama) in order to construct a road linking Ferozepur Road along the drain.

The protesters, including women, blocked the road by burning tyres and chanted slogans against Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif.

Speaking on the occasion, Federation of Katchi Abadis Lahore (FKAL) President Rana Abdul Sattar Nasir said since the residents were given ownership rights in 1985 after their colony was declared a Katchi Abadi in 1960, the authorities had no right to demolish their houses.

He warned the Punjab government to drop its plan of demolishing Chaudhry Colony, otherwise the residents would have no option but to surround the CM’s house. Continue reading

Karachi-Hyderabad motorway: NHA cancels contract with Malaysian firm

KARACHI, Jan 27: The National Highway Authority has cancelled a contract signed for the conversion of the existing four-lane Karachi-Hyderabad superhighway into six-lane motorway (M-9) and has invited new parties to build the road, it emerged here on Sunday.

According to sources, the NHA had given the contract on the basis of built, operate and transfer (BOT) to a Malaysian multinational company in January 2012 at a cost of Rs18.267 billion. Under a concession agreement, the company was to recover the cost by collecting toll from the vehicles using the road for 25 years, after which the road would have to be handed over to the NHA.

The sources said the NHA justified the cancellation by accusing the contractor of not fulfilling the conditions of the agreement while the contractor accused the authority of not meeting its part of the conditions without which the contractor could not start the work.

The sources said the NHA had failed to hand over the entire land / its papers relating to the construction as well as the right of way to the contractor who insisted that clear possession and title of the entire required land for the project in the name of the NHA was necessary, without which funds could not be arranged from the international and local financial institutions, though some of those had shown interest in the project.

In reply to Dawn queries, the NHA’s Yousuf Barakzai said the contract was terminated because the contractor could not do the financial close nor could start work according to the timeline set in the agreement and now the project had once again been advertised. Soon a new contractor, who could carry out the work, would be selected and awarded a contract in a transparent manner. He said the contractor could not even get the environmental impact assessment report approved by the Sindh Environmental Protection Agency which was mandatory before the start of work. Continue reading

Commercialisation fees: DCO seen as going soft on traders ahead of elections

LAHORE: The city government has sought more time to collect commercialisation fees on all commercial roads, with a deadline for this set by the Punjab government due to expire on June 30.

The office of the district coordination officer (DCO) sent a letter to the local government secretary stating that the target of collection of all such fees by the deadline could not be met. It said that the District Office of Special Planning had recently conducted a survey identifying 17,493 commercial properties on the 117 commercial roads in the city, giving the city government potential revenue of Rs9 billion. It did not say how much time was needed.

Commercialisation fees are fees that must be paid for the conversion of a residential property to a property being used for commercial purposes, such as a shop or office.

Special Planning officials said that their staff had been given until February to serve notices on all properties where commercialisation fees had not been paid. The notices give the properties seven days to pay or face legal action. Prior to the survey, the office had been set an annual revenue collection target of Rs500 million. The officials said that they had collected just over Rs30 million.

Special Planning officials said that the collection target would be especially tough to meet with DCO Noorul Amin Mengal recently suspending the notices for a couple of markets. Continue reading

Commercial demolition

LAHORE – Staff of the Town Planning Wing of Lahore Development Authority carried out demolition operation against illegal constructions at four different places in the city on Thursday.

The LDA staff demolished basement of plaza which was being illegally constructed on plot No 808 of Ravi Block Allama Iqbal Town. It also dismantled an illegal commercial construction on plot No. 905 of B-block, Faisal Town Moulana Shaukat Ali Road.
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