ISLAMABAD: After more than three decades, the Capital Development Authority (CDA) has finally decided to start work on the development of E-12.

The first phase of the project, on which over all Rs6 billion will be spent, would be started in a couple of days and the project would be completed in three years.

The prime land of the sector was allotted decades ago but the plot owners have not been given possession so far.

First phase of project costing Rs6bn will be completed in three years, official says

The CDA announced the sector in 1985 but even after three decades could not acquire possession of the land. The affected people of the sector were told by the CDA that they would get plots in I-12 but the deal could not be materialised. So a number of affected people refused to vacate their land.

Moreover, CDA officials tried to include fake affected people in the list for payment of compensation. They also allowed people to construct buildings and boundary walls to get compensation for the built-up property (BuP).

The BuP compensation is paid for building material even to those who are not owners of land. In 2007, during verification out of the 1,935 affected people 1,054 were found fake. As a result, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) also started investigating the scandal.

On July 27, 2002, police opened fire on villagers of Siri Saral when the CDA tried to take possession of the land. As a result, two persons were killed. The police then registered a case against the villagers on the charges of murder, attempts to murder, police encounter and terrorism. However, later the Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi bench directed the capital police to register a murder case against an officer of the district administration.

In March this year, the civic agency managed to get possession of the Siri Saral village.

CDA Chairman CDA Amer Ali Ahmed told Dawn that it was the main job of the civic agency to develop sectors but no one managed to do so due to which not only new sectors could not be developed but also funds could not be generated.

“We have decided to complete the project within three years and the cost of the project would be over Rs6 billion. Though 4,000 plots would be developed, there is the potential to develop over 3,000 more plots so a huge amount can be generated from the sector.”

Mr Ahmed said there were a number of other sectors in the pipeline and the CDA would make efforts to start them at the earliest.

According to an official statement, the CDA has awarded the contract for Service Road (North) of Sector E-12 and directed the contractor to mobilise all machinery by Sunday (today).

On the instructions of CDA, the contractor has set up a site office in the sector and work would be started in a couple of days.

On Sept 12, as many as 16 construction companies participated in a bidding and M/s Shabir Ahmed and Brothers came up with a bid which was 30pc below the estimated cost of Rs139.228 million.

The contract was awarded to the lowest bidding company which offered Rs97.107 million.

Published in Dawn, October 13th, 2019