Illegal Constructions Go Unchecked In City

Daily Times

The city mayor was often accused of supporting illegal constructions in the city, however, the local bodies had expired and the mayor left the office, but illegal constructions continue in gross violation of the building bylaws and putting serious doubts over the performance of the Municipal Corporation’s building inspectors.

The commissioner Rawalpindi Zafar Iqbal is currently having the additional charge of the administrator of Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) who is also unable to stop illegal constructions in the city resulting loss of Rs millions to the public body and creating problems for the residents of the city.

Sources said, a market comprising of more than 50 shops is constructed in Main Pir Wadhai near Jamia Masjid Ghousia without the approval of the competent authority i.e. MCR.

Similarly, a number of shops and markets are constructed in the locality of Farooq-e-Azam Road in clear violation of the local government building laws, while two commercial buildings are recently constructed illegally at Zafarul Haq Road.

A large number of commercial buildings, markets and shops have been constructed in Kabbar Market, also known as Choor Gali, Dhok Khabba, Bangash Colony, Railway Workshop Road, Dhok Matkeyal and other localities of the city without having approved building plan in violation of building laws.

Sources said that officials of MCR allegedly take bribe money and allow illegal constructions.

Sources privy to the development said, the building inspector just issue a notice to the owner of the building for violating the building by-laws just to complete their departmental formalities and to protect themselves from any departmental action, but do not further pursue the notice.

The MCR has filed an application on July 22, 2019, in New Town Police Station to register an FIR against the Ghulam Rasool – owner property – for violating the building by-laws in construction of the commercial plaza at F-Block Satellite Town near Katarian Market Rawalpindi.

Despite the passage of almost two months, the FIR cannot be lodged against the law violators because the MCR never visited the police stations after the submission of the application to pursue it, sources maintained.

Similarly, if any illegal construction came to the notice of higher authorities or reported in media, the building inspector submits an application in the Police Station but do not pursue them to lodge the FIR. Due to the negligence of the MCR building inspectors large numbers of applications are pending in different police stations.

The officials of the Planning department misleading the administrator by saying that notices issued or application submitted in the police station.

Zaheer Awan – a local leader of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)- also move toward the Chief Minister Complaint Cell, despite the directive of the CM complaint cell the MCR officials did not take any action against the illegal constructions identified in the said complaint.

The audit report has also raised objections on the illegal construction in the city, moreover, time – to – time citizen also filed complaints in the Anti-Corruption Establishment to probe into the alleged corruption of the building inspectors and officials of the planning department for allowing the illegal construction but despite that the illegal constructing going on the city. Despite repeated attempts, Municipal Officer (Planning) Abdul Salam could not be reached for his comments.

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