Tehsil councils to get powers for housing schemes’ approval

Updated 07 Jul 2020

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The proposed law amendment also empowers the tehsil municipal administration to oversee, supervise and exercise regulatory control on the establishment of any development of any private housing scheme during implementation phase. — Dawn/File
The proposed law amendment also empowers the tehsil municipal administration to oversee, supervise and exercise regulatory control on the establishment of any development of any private housing scheme during implementation phase. — Dawn/File

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa cabinet on Tuesday approved the proposed changes to the KP Local Government Act, 2019, to empower tehsil councils across the province to approve private housing schemes.

The cabinet’s meeting was chaired by Chief Minister Mahmood Khan and attended by cabinet members and administrative secretaries.

Spokesman for the government Ajmal Wazir told reporters that the cabinet approved the draft KP Local Government Amendment Act, 2019, meant to provide regulation and encouragement to the site developers and private investors.

The newly-inserted section, 23(b)(5), states, “Once the chairman tehsil local government council, is satisfied that requirements for the grant of approval for establishing and development of private housing schemes are met, he may place the application for approval before the tehsil council, which may approve the application with simple majority.”

Cabinet okays proposed changes to LG law for the purpose

The proposed law amendment also empowers the tehsil municipal administration to oversee, supervise and exercise regulatory control on the establishment of any development of any private housing scheme during implementation phase.

It, however, excluded agricultural lands and land owned by companies, institutions or factories for the creation of housing for its employees from turning into residential colonies.

Mr Ajmal said the amendment would help attract investment to the province as it had simplified procedures to make investment.

He said the amendment would also help regulate the construction sector.

“A strategy will be chalked out to protect agricultural lands from being used for residential colonies,” he said, adding that the chief minister asked the relevant departments to come up with that strategy.

The spokesman said the cabinet had also approved mechanism for the signing of the memorandum of understanding in public sector.

He said under the new mechanism, prior approval of the cabinet had been made mandatory for all MoUs involving financial implications in government funding.

Mr Ajmal, however, said approval of the MoU involving only technical assistance would be taken from the chief minister through a summary.

He said the cabinet also approved proposed amendments to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mines and Minerals Act, 2017.

The spokesman said through the proposed amendments, two additional members would be added to the minerals titles committee.

According to him, the cabinet also approved the renaming of the Bagh Dehari irrigation scheme in Swat district as the Shamozai irrigation scheme.

It also approved the de-federalisation of the Chitral-Ayun-Bumburet Road and thus, handing over its control to the communication and works department.

He said the cabinet approved increase in the approval scope of the departmental development working party (DDWP) from Rs100 million to Rs200 million for the approval of developmental schemes.

The cabinet discussed the proposed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Healthcare Service Providers & Facilities (Prevention of Violence and Damage to Property) Act, 2020, and decided to form its committee headed by the health minister to fine tune the draft law and submit the same to the cabinet for approval in the next meeting.

A statement said the chief minister directed all government departments in the meeting to meticulously review their respective laws having conflicts with the laws of other departments and propose necessary amendments to remove such discrepancies.

He also ordered a detailed briefing for the cabinet on the implementation of its previous decisions.

The chief minister appreciated the mineral development department for collection of record revenue of Rs3.25 billion in the last fiscal compared to the previous year’s Rs2.1 billion and asked other departments to improve performance for better revenue collection.

Published in Dawn, July 7th, 2020