Islamabad-The fruit vendors and encroachers at Mandi Morr, which the Capital Development Authority (CDA) had expelled from the area in a major anti-encroachment operation, have started returning with their merchandise.
A few months ago, CDA had expelled around 400 vendors of different kinds from Mandi Morr but as the anti-encroachment body of the authority seems to have fallen in slumber, the vendors can again be seen lining up their merchandise in wheelbarrows along the Service Road parallel to the IJP Road in sector I-11. The number of vendors is increasing day by day with the CDA’s enforcement directorate officials absent from the area and are causing nuisance for the pedestrians and road jams. There are transport stands along the service road and traffic jam is already a routine there.
In a major operation, the enforcement directorate of the CDA had demolished the stalls at Mandi Morr, the first and the last site to see on entering the federal capital. The vendors had set up their stalls at the service road while the concerned authorities at CDA took a lenient view towards the illegality. Until the latest operation some three months back, the vendors came back within hours of the operation. This time, however, they have taken weeks to set up their stalls again and start business activities at the same site. Therefore, the operation has proved to be an exercise in futility each time.
According to the sources in the CDA, encroachers cannot operate without connivance of the CDA officials. They said the inspectors of enforcement directorate would let the encroachers set up their business at the state land against monetary benefits. “It is not possible for the encroachers to do business without consent of the enforcement directorate’s officials,” said an official at the CDA on condition of anonymity.
In 2017, an official of the Enforcement Wing of the CDA was suspended on charges of misconduct and alleged involvement in growth of encroachments. The Authority had received reports regarding allowing various vendors to set up their business near Mandi Morr along the IJ Principal Road. Human Resources Development Directorate of CDA had issued orders for suspension of services of Inspector Zulfiqar Ahmed. The CDA had also suspended services of three other employees working in the enforcement directorate of the Authority. Services of Amjad Ali, Driver; Raja Zia Mehmood, Inspector and Raja Asim, Supervisor of the enforcement directorate were suspended on account of misconduct and corruption. Amjid Ali was suspended on reports of his involvement in illegal business of selling fruit on partnership basis at Rawal Dam Chowk along road side. Services of Raja Zia Mehmood were suspended on reports regarding setting up of several barbers / fruit selling shops along the road in sectors F-6/F-7, Islamabad. Raja Asim was suspended on reports of involvement in disclosing operational details to illegal encroachers in suburbs of Bari Imam.
ISLAMABAD: Vendors expelled from the Mandi Morr return to the
area again.–Staff photo