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ISLAMABAD: A parliamentary panel, expressing anger over the Capital Development Authority’s (CDA) failure to remove illegal constructions from government-allocated residences of public servants, on Tuesday directed the Ministry of Housing and Works to take strict action against encroachers and present all the details before the panel.

The meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Housing and Works, which was held here under the chairmanship of Senator Haji Hidayatullah, sought details of illegal construction on government-allotted accommodation and directed strict action against the encroachers.

Reviewing the matter regarding progress on tendering process to restart construction work related to Kashmir Avenue Apartments Sector G-13, permission to transfer Kashmir Avenue Apartments, the committee was informed that the transfer of Kashmir Avenue G-13 Apartment project had been opened subject to clearance of all outstanding instalments payable at the time of transfer of apartments as per payment schedule which is not less than 23 percent of the total cost of the apartment.

The committee stressed the need for timely possession of the apartments.

While discussing the re-tendering process, the committee was of the view that transparency must be ensured and that all out efforts must be made to ensure that there was no usurpation of rights of the contractor due to the termination of the previous contract.

The Senate Committee deliberated on the illegal construction and encroachment in government residences. Senior officials of the Ministry of Housing and Works apprised the committee that no construction in government residences could be done without prior approval from the ministry. The officials said that a committee has been constituted in the Estate Office which has conducted a survey of residences and issued notices to the allottees involved in illegal construction.

The chairman committee directed the ministry to provide the list of allottees to whom the notices have been issued and recommended the departments of alleged allottees to take stern action against them under the Efficiency and Discipline Rules.

Moreover, as to matter relating to appointments made by the Federal Government Employees Housing Authority (FGEHA) during the last two years, an official of the FGEHA informed the committee that the jobs in various positions were advertised last year and recruitment process was conducted through NUST and NTS testing services.

Senator SaifullahAbro asked the ministry to provide a copy of advertisement and tender through which the services of former agencies have been acquired. The panel was informed that a total of 95 persons have been appointed against the 97 advertised posts.

The chairman committee stated that these appointments have been made without following due process and therefore, directed the ministry to initiate an inquiry against the persons appointed against the said posts.

The committee probed details to the reasons for terminating the contract before starting the arbitration process. The panel also asked the Housing Ministry and the FGEHA officials to present details along with reasons for the termination of the committee in the next meeting.

Reviewing the matter of restarting the Residency Housing Project, Peshawar by the PHAF, the committee was informed that the main issue that was hindering the project was regarding the possession that had now been settled with the assistance of Commissioner Peshawar.

It was recommended that the committee visit the site of the project and meet the chief secretary to play a role in expediting the progress of this project.

The committee was attended by senatorsFalakNaz, Fida Muhammad, Bahramand Khan Tangi, and Maulana Abdul GhafoorHaideri, and senior officers of the Ministry of Housing and Works along with its attached departments and agencies.


Copyright Business Recorder, 2023


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