ISLAMABAD: The management of Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) has urged the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to immediately allot land to the university in exchange for hundreds of kanal of the QAU land being utilised by the civic authority in the Bhara Kahu bypass project.

Sources stated that over 600 kanal of the university land was affected in the alignment of the road recently inaugurated by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. The officials of the university, however, said that in June this year, the CDA had promised alternate land in the same area.

“QAU’s land falling in the alignment of Bhara Kahu bypass road ..will be swapped with the CDA’s available land in the area,” the minutes of the CDA board meeting on June 17 read. However, before providing the university with alternate land, the CDA started work on the project.

“We have already made a commitment and we will honour it. The QAU would get its due land soon,” said an officer of CDA, adding that QAU VC Dr Mohammad Ali was also a member of the CDA board; therefore, there was no question of reneging on the promise.

Civic body says will not renege on promise as university demands emergency meeting

“It is a government-to-government arrangement,” the officer assured.

On the other hand, QAU Registrar Dr Raja Qaiser Ahmed said that the university management would write a letter to the CDA in the next couple of days, asking the civic body to hold an emergency meeting to resolve the issue. “We want to get the allotment of the new land immediately,” he said and added that besides the allotment of land, the QAU would also take up the issue of encroachment on QAU land by old settlers and demarcation of the land already allotted.

It is relevant to note here that in 1967 the CDA had allotted 1,709 acres for the establishment of the QAU. According to the university official, the university had 1,509 acres which meant it was still short of around 200 acres, which may be under illegal possession of encroachers.

Earlier, PM Shehbaz Sharif laid the foundation stone of the bypass road project. The project worth Rs6.5 billion would be completed in four months, as per its PC-I while the prime minister directed for its completion in three months.

The five-kilometre-long road, including a 1 km flyover, starts from Murree Road near Quaid-i-Azam University stop and culminates at Murree Road near the Jugi bus stop adjacent to the Punjab Cash and Carry store. It will then have a one-km-long flyover which will end outside the Bhara Kahu bazaar.

Published in Dawn, October 3rd, 2022

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