ISLAMABAD, Aug 30: A recent Capital Development Authority (CDA) advertisement offered 90 residential plots in the high-value sectors of D-12 and E-12.

But the prices demanded for them are way beyond the market prices prevailing in the developed areas of the sectors.

“Until now one could buy a 500 square yard plot of his choice, such as a corner plot or the last one in a dead-end street, for Rs27.5 million in the market.

The CDA advertised prices could well escalate the market prices,” a property consultant doing business in sector D-12, Rana Murtaza Faheem, told Dawn.

That is not the only, or the most bizarre, oddity he noted in the advertisement. “It is quite strange that the CDA is offering plots in E-12 which is in adverse possession,” said Faheem, meaning the land CDA has offered is not in its possession, or at least is disputed.

Indeed, claimants to the E-12 land blocked the CDA attempt to laying the road network in the sector, which it had been developing since 1970.

However, the CDA feels smug about its marketing strategy.

“It will be wrong to find faults with the CDA sale pitch. All the financial parameters are in accordance with the technical and marketing data gathered by our planning, estate and financial departments for the auction of 90 plots in the two sectors,” asserted the CDA spokesman, Dr Naeem Rauf, to Dawn.

“Finally, the CDA Board formulated the strategy for auctioning the 90 residential plots in a smooth and transparent way,” he added.

“CDA’s plots have no correlation with the property market and our prices are based on our own assessment of the demand for our plots.”

But what about the issues in E-12?

“We have no issues in sector E-12,” retorted the CDA spokesman. “Only a limited area of the sector is under the adverse possession and our land directorate is working to resolve the land compensation issues and all such pending would be resolved within shortest possible time.”

In its Aug 23 advertisement for the auction of the 90 plots, the CDA has put the prices of plots in E-12 at Rs28.2 million for a 600 sq yd plot, Rs23.5 million for a 500 sq yd plot, and Rs16.7 million for a 356 sq yd plot.

In the more picturesque D-12 sector, in the foothills of Margallas, the starting price of a 500 sq yd plot in the auction would be Rs31.3 million, and of a 356 sq yd plot Rs22.3 million.

Bidders have to pay Rs5,000 for the application form and its processing fee, and 50 per cent down payment of the plot applied for, and also bear any taxes imposed by the government.

Bidders successful in the balloting for the allotment of plots will get a five per cent discount if they pay the remaining 50 per cent within seven days of issuance of intimation letter by the CDA.

Expatriate Pakistanis participating in the auction, set for October 7, 2013, can pay their dues also in US dollars but, like other unsuccessful bidders, will get their refund in Pakistani rupees – three months after the ballot.

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