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BAHAWALPUR: The National Accountability Bureau has begun inquiry against as many 31 private housing colonies allegedly developed in the city without meeting legal requirements.

According to municipal corporation (MC) mayor Aqeel Namaj Hashmi, the NAB launched the probe on the complaints of owners of residential plots in these housing colonies.

He told Dawn on Thursday that these residential colonies were illegal and developed during previous years without seeking approval of concerned authorities and meeting legal formalities.

He said the owners of these colonies had neither sought approval of the municipal corporation (formerly tehsil municipal administration) nor provided basic facilities to the plot buyers, earning millions of rupees by cheating them.

The buyers had complained to the NAB that the owners of these colonies had disappeared after receiving plots’ payments from them.

He said the NAB inquiry team had arrived here and would go through all the relevant records of these 31 private housing colonies. He said the team would submit its report to NAB higher authorities for further proceedings.

APPROVED: Punjab local government department has approved change in the name of Fowara Chowk, that would onwards be called Khatm-i-Nubawatt Chowk.

The change in the name of the city’s busiest intersection has been made in pursuance of a directive of the Lahore High Court (LHC) Bahawalpur bench, which in April, 2017 gave a verdict to this effect.

The verdict had been given while dismissing an intra-court appeal (ICA) of a former district and sessions judge, Mian Faizul Hassan, who had challenged the decision of the LHC single bench (Bahawalpur Bench).

The single bench had on the writ petition of a citizen, Ashfaq, renamed the intersection.

Mayor Aqeel Najam Hashmi had, in accordance with the LHC directive, forwarded the matter to Punjab local government department. According to the mayor, the department has issued a notification in this respect.

Following the notification, the municipal corporation has installed a plaque at the intersection bearing its changed name.

The intersection was earlier called Fowara Chowk because of a model of a fountain gifted in 1893 by Queen Victoria to late Nawab Sadiq Abbasi 1V.

APCA: The clerical staff of different government departments under the aegis of the All Pakistan Clerks Association (APCA) took out rallies from their respective offices to the press club, demanding increase in their salaries in the coming provincial budget.

Meanwhile, the lower staff in the district accounts office observed a two-hour token strike demanding upgrade of their posts by the Punjab government.

Published in Dawn, May 19th, 2017