ISLAMABAD, Nov 8: An uncertain future awaits the new hotels and restaurants being built in the high-security diplomatic enclave as the Capital Development Authority is rethinking the licences it issued them after the capital police conveyed concern over the activity.
CDA spokesman Ramzan Sajid confirmed that a request was received from the police to cancel the permission granted for constructing five hotels and restaurants and has been referred to the planning wing of the body for advice.
“We will address police's security concerns and also examine our by-laws whether the enclave needs these hospitality facilities,” the spokesman told Dawn on Thursday.
It has been learnt that the police personnel guarding the diplomatic enclave were alarmed at the on-going construction and informed their chief that the new hotels and restaurants would increase the security risk for the enclave unnecessarily.
“Two clubs managed by foreigners already exist there to serve the diplomatic community. There is no need to establish more as the UN Club and the French Club are enough for the limited number of foreigners residing in the enclave,” said police sources.
Security worries eventually made the city's Inspector General of Police to write to the city administration and the CDA, requesting that the ubiquitous ‘No Objection Certificates’ issued to the under construction hotels and restaurants be cancelled, the sources said.
They argue that the restricted entry now maintained by the police will have to be softened in case the upcoming facilities are allowed to go into business.
In his letter to the CDA chairman, the IGP cautioned that terrorists had been consistently trying to penetrate the security of the enclave where most of the diplomatic missions have moved for security.
“Security wing has observed that CDA has recently issued NOCs for the establishment of restaurants and hotels in non-confirming units without consulting the police,” the sources quoting the letter said.
The CDA spokesman Ramzan Sajid said the issue was referred to planning wing and action would be taken on its recommendation, he added.
He said the newly appointed CDA’s chairman had directed to examine all NOCs and licence issued for constructions in the city, including restaurants and hotels in the past, and if any construction was found in violation of rules action will be taken.
However, he further said that development, including the number of hotels and restaurant in an area in the city, is the responsibly of the CDA, not the police. The police can give proposal for development works, he said.