ISLAMABAD-The federal commission to review the master plan will decide the fate of an illegal housing scheme, Ghouri Town, where most of the houses and plots are owned by middle-class segment of the society. The IHC had referred the matter of regularisation of Ghouri Town to the Federal Commission, which is in process of revising the master plan of the capital while asked Capital Development Authority (CDA) to ensure that no further illegal developments are made in the area.

CDA has appointed an officer as focal person to redress the grievances of the residents of Ghouri Town following the directions of the Islamabad High Court. The city managers on Thursday nominated its Director Urban Planning Shaikh Ijaz Ahmed as focal person to implement the orders of the IHC and redress the complaints of the residents in an effective manner. The focal person was directed to take strict action against people who are involved in encroachment upon the public amenities in the area.

Ghouri Town is an illegal housing society comprising over hundreds of kanals while several of its phases mushroomed in the last one decade alongside the Islamabad Expressway. Dozens of residents had approached the IHC against the owner of the housing society and the civic body and took a stance that they had put their hard-earned money but now they came to know that the housing scheme was unauthorised while the owners were also not willing to take any responsibility.

Earlier, the city managers had also asked the district administration to move against the management of Ghouri Town under section 46 of the CDA Ordinance, which provides six months imprisonment or fine or both for its violators while an operation was also conducted in the area and several illegal buildings were either razed or sealed.

According to the details, the management of Ghouri Town including Raja Ali Akbar, Abdul Rehman, Ch Fazal Rehman, Raja Usman, Shakeel Abbasi, Raja Jehanzeb Akbar, and Raja Salman Akbar developed these illegal housing schemes in Zone-4 of Islamabad without obtaining prior permission of the CDA.

The civic agency had sealed the society’s offices on June 23, 2017 but only to unseal the same few weeks later. When CDA sealed the offices of Ghouri Town, there was a sense that the law would take its course while the management was visibly under pressure but according to sources, several local politicians pressurised the CDA to let the society open its offices. At the time of de-sealing of their offices, one of the core members of the management committee Raja Ali Akbar had submitted an undertaking that the society will submit documents for obtaining the NOC in 90 days.

However, the undertaking is still awaited in the civic body besides passage of over a year. On the other hand, those who have purchased plots and houses in the housing scheme are facing various problems such as obtaining utility connections, which are being denied to them on the CDA’s request.

The residents demand from the authorities to take strict action against management of Ghouri Town, who put their hard earned money on stake.