- Orders authority to immediately repay the loan of Rs5 billion it took from the Punjab government for the project
The Lahore High Court (LHC) declared on Tuesday the River Ravi Urban Development Project (RRUDP) illegal and passed orders to immediately halt its construction, Aaj News reported.
Justice Shahid Karim announced the reserved verdict, saying that Section 4 of the Ravi Urban Development Authority Act, 2020, is against the constitution. The mentioned section is contradictory to Article 144 of the Constitution of Pakistan, the judge said.
"Agricultural land can be acquired only when there is a proper legal framework for it but the land for RRUDP was acquired through a violation of Land Acquisition Act, 1894," the LHC said.
The high court also ordered that the Ravi authority immediately repay the loan of Rs5 billion it took from the Punjab government for the project.
Last year in September, Prime Minister Imran Khan had laid the foundation stone of the Ravi Riverfront Urban Development project. The construction of a 46-kilometer long lake from Ravi Siphon to Hudiara, laying of complex network of roads and construction of 12 new high-tech cities is the hallmark of this project.
While chairing a meeting last week, the PM was told that seven international groups have participated in the establishment of a waste treatment plant in the Ravi Urban Development project and agreements have been reached with international organisations including un-habitat to comply with international green standards.
He had directed the Punjab government to actively pursue legal cases pending against the projects.