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ISLAMABAD: The Survey of Pakistan (SoP)--the National Surveying and Mapping Organisation of the country has found the National Highways Authority (NHA) involved in carrying out surveying and mapping (S&M) activities through numerous firms/companies/entities, which are neither registered nor security cleared, official documents revealed.

As per the Surveying and Mapping Act, 2014, and it is the foremost effort of SoP to produce quality geo-spatial data and monitor S&M activities of various public and private organisations within the country.

In order to regularise/monitor S&M activities, and to prevent the unauthorised production of geospatial data, proper legislation has been made in the forms Surveying and Mapping Act, 2014,and Amendment 2020 and Surveying and Mapping Rules, 2015 and Amendment 2023.

According to these acts and rules, no public or private organisation, private firm or individual, national or international, shall undertake any geospatial data collection, production or analysis work and surveying and mapping activities unless they are registered with SoP.

Official documents revealed that it has surfaced that, the NHA being the custodian of road infrastructure of the country, executes numerous projects that involve the component of S&M activities and such activities are being carried out by numerous firms/companies/entities etc which are neither registered with SoP nor security cleared as per the procedure laid down by SoP.

For a comprehensive implementation of the purpose of the aforementioned Act and Rules and to ensure the security of national data, it is put forward that the Planning Commission may ensure that:(a) for preparation of PC-I documents wherein component of S&M (if any) is involved be only, carried out by firms which are registered with SoP for the sake of maintaining quality and accuracy of S&M work and the same be shared with SoP, free of cost, as per aforementioned Acts and Rules.

(b) All data produced (base maps, derivative maps and other products etc) will be submitted to SoP for vetting or evaluation as per Clause 7(b) of the Surveying and Mapping Act, 2020, and Clause 6(b) of the Surveying and Mapping (Amendment) Rules, 2023.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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