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ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Housing and Works, Monday, was informed by the officials of the Ministry of Housing and Works that public land in Karachi was leased out at Rs3 per square yard monthly rent to a mosque while the management of the mosque has rented out same land to a petrol pump at Rs300,000 per month.

The committee meeting held here under the chairmanship of Senator Haji Hidayatullah to discuss various pending projects and agreements of Federal Government Employees Housing Authority (FGEHA), expressed serious anger over the non-completion of various projects.

The Director General (DG) Estate Office, while briefing the panel on the matter of leased land, informed that 532 square yards land allotted to a mosque in Karachi’s Saddar area. The chairman committee directing the officials to give a detailed briefing on the subject deferred it for further deliberation.

The committee was further informed that there are a total nine petrol pumps covering an area of 7,965.72 sq yards and rent fixed as Rs784,167.5 as per lease. The secretary Ministry of Housing and Works, while briefing the panel on the matter of the land allocation to the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Housing Society, said that since the property has divided ownership, the main issue is of enhancing the mortgage rates; however, after the award, the ministry cannot increase the rates. He said that the ministry was ready to pay Rs3.4 million amount to every person who has sold his land.

The secretary said that the ministry officials have held meetings with the main guarantor owner of the disputed land but the occupants were demanding revised rates. The committee also suggested constituting committee having two senior members from the Ministry of Housing and Works which was acknowledged by senior joint secretary Housing and Works. The committee recommended expediting the resolution of the matter in consultation with the committee members.

The matter of briefing of the Director General (Estate ) regarding detail of commercial properties leased out by the Estate Office in the country during the last five years was deferred for further deliberation. The committee sought a date-wise report on the name of the owners and year of allotment.

While taking briefing by the DG Estate office on the detail of the allottees of the Federal Lodge, Islamabad along with their names, designation, CNIC numbers, date of allotment, rent per day, maximum period allowed under the Rules and the period after the maximum period expired; the committee again sought report while also including the date of births of the allottees.

On details of whether certificate for having no residence in the name of the officials and their spouses are furnished by the officers before allotment of E-type or above category government accommodation, matter is sub-judice in the court. While giving a detailed briefing by the Director General FGEHA on the present status of sectors, F-14 and F-15, it was discussed in detail issues of total number of land, number of allottees so far and number of allottees left. The committee also sought report on tendering and bidding process including details of the advertisement.

The DG Housing Authority said that his department has also accepted the land sharing and land value enhancement formula on behalf of local people, and have approved PC-1 of this project, made belt and also made a lot of progress. Senator Saifullah Abro inquired on the present details of how the contract for the development of this project was given to FWO, to which the DG Housing Authority informed that the FWO was mobilised after the court stopped the work.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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