ISLAMABAD: The growth of illegal guest houses in residential areas of Islamabad is on a rapid rise and has now reached to 102 in different sectors, a source in the Capital Development Authority (CDA) confirmed to Pakistan Today.
The source further added that the Supreme Court (SC) had ordered to stop the non-conforming use of residential buildings in the federal capital two years ago but selective action was taken by the Building Control Section (BCS) against small guest houses while others having luxurious guest houses were spared as the high-ups of the building control wing of the CDA take bribes from them on a monthly basis.
Additionally, the BCS of the civic agency has not collected data of guest houses operating illegally in residential areas although the association of the guest houses has statistics in this regard.
To investigate the matter the scribe visited various guest houses in posh areas of Islamabad and spoke to the owners, most of whom confirmed the bribes taken by CDA.
A manager in a guest house in F-7 guest house confirmed to Pakistan Today that the bribe amount depends on how luxurious a guest house is and how much it earns. “We also have to give free accommodations to relatives and friends of CDA officials in our guest houses. Once we had to refuse due to over-booking so they sealed our business the very next day under the guise of a raid,” he added.
When contacted, a member of the association of guest houses who wished to remain anonymous said that the Building Control Section of CDA only lets guest houses paying over a lakh rupees a month to function openly.
“Luxurious guest houses in F-6 & F-7 sectors are not only giving high bribes to the CDA administration but also providing free accommodations to their relatives and friends,” he said.
When contacted, BCS Director Faisal Naeem denied the accusations saying that he would take action if an officer is named.