LAHORE - On the first day of Punjab government’s anti-encroachment operation on Thursday, 80-kanal state owned land was retrieved from land grabbers in Johar Town and Anarkali markets.

The operation is named ‘Clean and Green’ Pakistan. Clean is referred to retrieve the land from the land grabbers and green is referred to tree plantation drive. Drive against land grabbers will continue for 22 days.

Demolishing upper floors of shops in Anarkali, debris fell on a shopkeeper who was later shifted to hospital for treatment.

People demanded the right to stay on the property and showed documents to the authorities signed by LDA officials. LDA retrieved 39 residential plots and 43 LDA plots from land grabbers during the operation.  Minister for Housing Mian Mehmood ur Rasheed talked to reporters after inspecting the operation. He said this operation was started to establish writ of the government. “This operation will continue for one month and after that we will regularly monitor the operation,” he said.

“If any officers are involved in allotting plots to people, strict action will be taken against them. If people consider that their right to stay on the land is violated and if they have documents, the LDA DG is there to facilitate,” he said.

Punjab Government has started operation against land grabbers in province’s divisional and district headquarters, Housing minister said. 

Grand operation was carried out by District Administration Lahore along with Lahore Development Authority and Metropolitan Corporation Lahore. District administration along with LDA retrieved 80 kanals covered with houses and furniture shops of Lahore development authority by demolishing shops and houses.

Heavy machinery was used in the operation while dozens of police and officials of civil defence were also present on the spot to avoid any untoward incident.

Deputy Commissioner Lahore Anwarl-ul-Haq, Director General LDA Amna Imran also visited Johar Town and monitored the operation.

District Administration along with MCL also launched operation in Anarkali where encroachment team removed permanent and temporary encroachments and completed 40 percent of the operation in Anarkali Bazar.

Deputy Commissioner Lahore Anwarl-ul-Haq, while talking to media persons said that District Administration was vigilant in anti-encroachment drive and it will complete its operation till the complete elimination of encroachment and retrieval of state land from the metropolitan city.