RAWALPINDI: Instead of asking commercial plazas on Murree Road to vacate their basements for parking, the District Coordination Committee (DCC) led by MNA Raja Qamarul Islam has asked the Rawalpindi Municipal Corporation (RMC) to allocate vacant spaces under Chandni Chowk and 6thRoad flyovers for the purpose.

A DCC meeting was held at the deputy commissioner office on Saturday with MNA Islam in the chair and attended by MNAs Malik Ibrar, Daniyal Chaudhry, Aqeel Malik, Osama Ishfaq Sarwar and MPAs Raja Shaukat Bhatti, Ziaullah Shah, Mohsin Khan and Raja Hanif Advocate. Representatives of the district administration and civic bodies were also present.

The issue of parking of cars and motorcycles was raised by some parliamentarians and after discussion the committee decided to ask the RDA to convert the vacant spaces under the flyovers into parking lots.

It may be mentioned that under the building bye-laws of the RMC, commercial plaza owners have to allocate basements of their buildings for parking besides leaving 25 feet space on the front side for this purpose.

No action taken against plaza owners for turning basements into shops

However, the building owners have converted basements into shops and force visitors to park their vehicles on the roadsides.

The RMC, being supervised by Commissioner Aamir Khattak, has turned a blind eye to the violation by plaza owners. In 2023, then commissioner Liaquat Ali Chatha had asked the RMC to conduct a survey to check whether basements were being used for parking or owners had constructed shops there. The survey found 36 buildings violating the building bye-laws.

However, after the passage of one year, no action has been taken against the violation and the parliamentarians have now come up with the new idea of utilising the vacant spaces under flyovers for parking.

A senior parliamentarian requesting not to be named told Dawn that some people had raised the issue of parking and informed the meeting that some nomads had encroached on the spaces under flyovers so “we decided to allocate it for parking to get rid of them.’

He said RMC officials did not listen to the complaints of citizens and ignored the violations of building bye-laws in the city areas.

“We also raised the issue of slow procedure for approval of building plans as many people complained that they had submitted their building plans in 2018 and 2019 but never got any response from RMC building branch,” he said.

Meanwhile, MNA Qamarul Islam took notice of the slow computer system in the land revenue offices, especially in Raja Bazaar, and asked the additional deputy commissioner revenue to update the computers for e-registration of land record so that people do not have to wait for e-registry for long.

Approval of the scheme of PHA Rawalpindi sent to Punjab government, he said.

He said providing relief to the public is our top priority, public welfare works should be completed on priority basis.

No concessions will be made to those who obstruct the solution of public problems, he said.

He also said that all possible steps should be taken to beautify the city. A scheme of the PHA Rawalpindi has been sent to the Punjab government for approval, he said.

Published in Dawn, June 2nd, 2024

Opinion

Editorial

Reforming militants
24 Jul, 2024

Reforming militants

Such initiatives have been tried before, in Swat for instance, at centres run by the military as well as NGOs.
IPP debate
24 Jul, 2024

IPP debate

A FIERCE debate blaming the exorbitant electricity prices on expensive power purchase agreements with IPPs has been...
Political vendettas
24 Jul, 2024

Political vendettas

IT seems that the PML-N and PPP need to be reminded again that they are doing themselves a considerable disservice ...
Security concerns
23 Jul, 2024

Security concerns

All stakeholders want what is best for the country and its people; their differing approaches shouldn’t be viewed with such suspicion all the time.
Frankfurt vandalism
23 Jul, 2024

Frankfurt vandalism

THE state needs to seek serious answers from the German authorities regarding the July 20 mob attack targeting...
Stressed cotton economy
23 Jul, 2024

Stressed cotton economy

DECREASING cotton production should be a worry for the government because of its socioeconomic implications. Early...