Around 15,000 kanal state land retrieved from encroachers, land grabbers

ISLAMABAD:The Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration has recovered around 15,000 kanal state land from encroachers and land grabbers during the last year that also included 8,000 kanal of forest land.

“Some 1,000 acres (8,000 kanal) of forest land have been handed over to the Punjab Forest Department on which massive forestation is being carried out,” Deputy Commissioner Islamabad Hamza Shafqaat told reporter on Thursday in an exclusive interview.

He said the Punjab Forest Department was installing boundary pillars around the recovered land to avert re emergence of encroachers.

Similarly, some 7,000 kanal land were freed from illegal possession of land grabbers that included 8 kilometer (km) stretch on the Kashmir Highway, and 20 km in Tarnol and Rawat, Grand Trunk (GT) Road.

Hamza said some 500 shops along the G.T road had also been demolished to clear the Right of Way (RoW). The land related to the RoW had been handed over to the National Highway Authority (NHA), which would be utilized for developing road infrastructure in the area, he maintained.

He said around 600 acres of land in Tumair had also been recovered that were still being demarcated by the Survey of Pakistan. Moreover some 250 kanal land of the Quid-e-Azam University had also been given to the varsity’s administration after removing encroachments in the area.

The Deputy Commissioner said the city administration had also handed over some 2,700 kanal land of the Botanical Gardens in Bani Gala to the Directorate of Environment of Municipal Corporation of Islamabad after building a boulevard around it.

He said the Capital Development Authority had also been given 3,000 kanal land after demolishing illegal buildings in the sector E-12 of Islamabad. 400 kanal land on embankment of Korang river had also been retrieved during the anti-encroachment drive.

To a query, he said the local administration in collaboration with other stakeholders conducted anti-encroachment on regular basis and committed to free all the possessed state land from encroachers.

Hamza said some 3,000 Kanal state land still in illegal possession in the federal capital which were in litigation at the moment.

Highlighting its future plan with regard to the anti-encroachment drive, he said the administration would soon launch massive campaign to recover land from encroachers in multiple sectors of Islamabad including C-14, F-13, D-13 and others.