Evacuee trust’s properties worth Rs75b yet to be retrieved

— ETBP recovers properties worth Rs25b

ISLAMABAD: Out of its properties worth around Rs 100 billion being encroached/ illegally occupied across the country, the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) has recovered 3,598 acres of land worth Rs 25 billion by mid of this month.

The recovery of the precious properties/agricultural land has been possible under the supervision of chairman of the one-man commission on minorities’ rights and protection, Dr Shoaib Suddle, constituted by the Supreme Court of Pakistan in 2019.

The commission was also given the task by the apex court around four months ago to ensure that the dues of the ETPB are covered from the tenants of properties and the illegally occupied land too was retrieved. 

The new responsibilities were given to the Commission by the SCP after an audit report was submitted to the apex court. Led by the One-man Commission ETPB has recovered more than 25 percent of assets illegally occupied for more than two decades within a span of three months.

According to details available with this scribe, the ETPB, with the help of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and as per findings of forensic audit 2021-22, is retrieving its occupied land in various districts of Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The rights and protection commission, headed by Dr Shoab Suddle, who is also the former inspector general of police, was formed on the orders of the Supreme Court in the aftermath of the Peshawar church attack to audit the properties of minorities.

As per the details, the first quarterly report compiled by the Commission has highlighted that out of around Rs2.94 billion recoverable dues (rental etc of properties) Rs694 has been recovered up to March.

The board has taken control of 3598 acres of land as of March 2023 out of the total occupied 15008 acres of land worth around Rs 100 billion across the country whereas 11410 acres of land are yet to be retrieved. The estimated cost of the retrieved land, as per officials, was Rs 24.912 billion (Rs 25 bn).

Most of the occupied properties of ETPB were in districts of Karachi, Hyderabad and Sukkur of Sindh and Quetta of Balochistan where only 1436 acres  properties/land worth Rs 3 billion have been retrieved so far out of 9953 acres of land.

In districts of Punjab and KP including Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Bannu, Bhakkar and Hassanabdal at least 1314 acres of land were retrieved out of 2351 acres of occupied land of ETPB. Furthermore, in districts of Multan, Sahiwal, Bahawalpur and Layyah 237 acres of land were taken back by the board out of its 1512 acres of occupied land.

In Faisalabad, Sargodha, Okara and Jhang districts the evacuee trust was able to retrieve 270 acres of land out of 577 acres of encroached land. Similarly, the ETPB has retrieved a considerable number of its land grabbed by encroachers/occupiers in Lahore, Kasur, Sheikhupura, Nankana Sahib,  Gujrat, Gujranwala and Sialkot districts so far.

It may be mentioned here that the Supreme Court had earlier directed the FIA to take action on the report of the Auditor General of Pakistan regarding alleged irregularities in property units of the ETPB. The court was earlier informed that the trust owned a total of 48,000 properties, out of which only three properties were sold.

Ghulam Abbas
Ghulam Abbas
The writer is a member of the staff at the Islamabad Bureau. He can be reached at [email protected]


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -

Must Read

Mehbooba, Tarigami fume over new SM rules for IIOJK employees

SRINAGAR: In Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir, the President of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mehbooba Mufti, has said the social media guidelines for...