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RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) collected an amount of Rs45.7 million as building plan fee in six months against the target of Rs23 million for the current fiscal year.

RDA Chairman Arif Abbasi told Dawn that it was a record achievement of the civic body that it collected more than the target set for a year in just six months.

“We collected more funds because of the recent drive against unauthorised buildings.”

He said the RDA launched the campaign against unauthorised buildings which forced the owners to get approval of their plans from the civic body before starting the construction.

In previous years, the civic body could not achieve its targets set to collect the building plan fees due to its inefficiency and corruption, he added.

“The provincial government warned building inspectors that action would be taken against them if any unauthorised building was constructed in their respective areas.”

Rs45.7 million collected in building plan fees against Rs23m target set for ongoing fiscal year, chairman says

He said in the past many buildings were constructed without approval of their building plans.

“RDA sealed many shops and commercial buildings during the last three months forcing the owners to approach the civic body for approval of their building plans and pay the fee,” he said.

The RDA chairman claimed that the civic body also uploaded the layout plans of all private housing societies who had obtained no-objection certificates (NOC) from it.

He said housing societies had to sell only those plots which were mentioned in the layout plans or maps.

In the past, the owners and managers of private housing societies got approval of their schemes having 100 plots but sold more than 200 plots. He said the private housing societies made changes to their original plans and also sold plots allocated for public areas, including parks, schools, mosques and graveyards.

The RDA land branch, he added, had been asked to take stern action against housing societies which failed to get approval from the civic body.

“The provincial government has made it clear that housing societies have to get approval from RDA before starting work.”

The government has also directed the RDA to check the land record of private housing societies from the land revenue department and not to issue NOCs to those societies who failed to produce the land record for their proposed project.

“The RDA is increasing the number of its teams to inspect private housing societies whether or not they are working as per law. The working of the enforcement cell will be improved and provided with police assistance.”

However, the RDA website negated the claim of the chairman. Out of the 32 approved private housing societies, the layout plans of 11 are still pending. The website stated that the layout plans would be uploaded soon.

Published in Dawn, February 17th, 2019