Categories: Islamabad

CDA all set to free Islamabad from encroachments

ISLAMABAD: On Prime Minister Imran Khan’s instructions, Capital Development Authority (CDA) Chairman Afzal Latif has ordered across the board anti-encroachment operation in the federal capital.

With special emphasis on markets, parks and IT centres, the crackdown would also take concrete measures against private properties that are being used for commercial activities in all sectors of the federal capital, Pakistan Today has learnt.

The CDA’s building control-II in collaboration with the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) magistrate and enforcement staff of the civic agency conducted sealing operation against high-rise towers in Sector E-11, Golra, on Thursday. The operation comes in the wake of the new CDA chairman’s orders that demanded the civic agency to launch massive crackdown against illegal constructions.

The CDA has also sought assistance from the Punjab inspector general (IG) with regard to arrest warrants of the culprits as well as imposition of heavy fine on the violators.

Madina tower, Capital Residential Complex, Umair Residentia, Verandah, Shah G football ground, Roomi swimming pool and Ahad Apartments have been sealed for the third time now by the CDA. Moreover, the authority has also sealed an illegal mineral water factory (Happy Mineral Water), which was packing unsafe water in used disposable bottles.

It is pertinent to mention that the CDA had previously conducted several anti-encroachment operations against the residential towers in E-11 Golra, but the owners and residents were continuously showing defiance of law and had several times reentered the sealed premises. Despite the registration of FIRs by CDA authorities against the property owners, investors and builders, the situation remained unchanged.

The CDA high ups had also issued notices to 84 high-rise apartment complexes in Sector E-11 after meeting with owners, who were told to ensure within a month regularization of their properties in accordance with the CDA bylaws.

Sector E-11, a relatively new sector of the capital, continued to accommodate and absorb restaurants, boutiques, media houses and other outlets even after CDA served them eviction notices for their involvement in carrying of commercial activities in residential areas.

Since 2014, the CDA has repeatedly acted against non-conforming use of residential premises. In September last year, the Supreme Court ordered the authority to take indiscriminate action against encroachments and illegal commercial activities in the capital. Furthermore, in January this year, the SC had ordered CDA to regularize all high-rise buildings and farm houses in Islamabad.

Shah Nawaz Mohal

The writer is a law graduate and journalist based in Islamabad. He can be reached at mshahnawazmohal@gmail.com.

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