ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday directed the Federal Government Employees Housing Authority (FGEHA) to redress grievances of the affected landowners of F-14 and F-15 in six weeks.

IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah while hearing identical petitions against the land acquisition for these sectors reminded the FGEHA that the owners of land were the main stakeholders in development of any sector but the authority was treating them otherwise.

Justice Minallah observed that it was an injustice that the authority forcibly acquired land from villagers and the adjudicator for any land acquisition dispute was its executive board, but every member of the FGEHA executive board was the beneficiary of the development of both the sectors.

It may be noted that subsequent to the August 17 balloting of plots for F-14 and F-15, the FGEHA executive board unanimously approved one plot for each of its members.

The IHC, however, suspended the decision of the executive board. Justice Minallah has also suspended the allotments of all the 4,723 plots to top judges, including Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed, senior puisne judge Umar Atta Bandial along with 50 other judges of the superior courts, senior bureaucrats and others.

Justice Minallah pointed out that since the FGEHA had developed pecuniary interest of its board members how they would adjudicate upon appeals against the acquisition of land for these sectors.

He also expressed displeasure over the authority for lingering on the matter.

The court, however, asked the director law of the FGEHA to examine cases of affected landowners to redress their grievances.

Advocate Danyal, a counsel for the landowners, however, requested the court to decide the petitions since FGEHA appeared not interested in compensating the villagers. Justice Minallah advised him to have faith in the government entity.

“Even otherwise, the petitions are pending before the IHC and the court would take up this matter again,” he added.

Further hearing in the matter was adjourned till January 18.

Meanwhile, FGEHADirector General Tariq Rashid visited the under-construction Kashmir Avenue Apartments, G-13 Chaklala Heights and Skyline Apartments.

The staff present at the sites informed the DG that there were 3,432 apartments in the Chaklala scheme while the Skyline Apartments comprised 3,945 units.

“This authority is trying hard to provide residential facilities to the allottees in a shortest possible time. Besides these projects, FGEHA is also launching other housing projects for the federal government employees and other segments of society,” said a press release issued by FGEHA.

The DG was told that 1467 apartments were also being constructed at Kashmir Avenue. The DG asked the staff to complete all the projects well on time and where necessary carry out the work in two shifts.

Moreover, he also visited the ongoing projects in Lifestyle Residency G-13, G-15/3, F-14 and F-15 and asked for their timely completion.

The DG was told that for the first time the authority had started supplying potable water in G-14/4 through the recently completed water supply system. Previously, potable water in the sector was supplied solely by private tankers.

Published in Dawn, November 27th, 2021

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