Islamabad - The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has initiated the process of relocation of worker union office, a mosque and cafeteria within its premises to provide a piece of land measuring 4.86 Kanals to country’s premier intelligence agency to build a mosque.  

The Directorate General of Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) had requested civic body to allot the required land adjacent to its existing headquarter at sector G-7/4 for the construction of mosque.

It pleaded further in its request that the 3000 employees of their organisation are offering prayers under temporary arrangements since land is not available within the headquarter premises for the construction of a centralised mosque.

Initially, the CDA declined the request and asked to seek permission of the Prime Minister regarding the matter. However, the CDA board in its meeting held on 10 October, 2017 granted permission to hand over the land but on certain terms and conditions.  It was decided that the CDA would not allot this land permanently to ISI as it requires a formal procedure, but will make an exception for the construction of a mosque, which will be used jointly by CDA and ISI.

“The cost of the construction of mosque and relocation of already-existing structures will be borne by ISI while the site shall remain the property of CDA”, the board further underlined.   It is pertinent to mention here that a land measuring 7.61 acres had already been given to ISI in addition to its originally allotted plot measuring 2.23 acres.

The said 7.61 acres land was also in use of CDA, where once its office blocks, parking sheds, stores and labs were situated however the same were handed over to ISI on the directions of then Chief Executive of Pakistan in three phases. 

Currently, the union office, a small prayer hall, cafeteria are located on land requested by ISI, which is at the south eastern corner of CDA’s Secretariat adjacent to the boundary of the headquarters of Directorate General of ISI.

According to a notification issued by Administration Directorate CDA, the union office will be relocated to another block within the civic body’s secretariat however a separate building would be constructed to accommodate the affected facilities. 

While responding on the development, the Director Administration CDA, Syed Safdar Shah informed The Nation: “We are relocating the worker union office temporally till the construction of a new building while the cafeteria will remain closed as we don’t have another place to accommodate it.”     

“We have earmarked a space to build a dedicated building to shift union office, cafeteria there and it would be completed soon”, he added. 

The workers and officers of civic body are happy over the construction of mosque comprising a large area but have also expressed their doubts on possible restrictions by intelligence agency over offering prayers by CDA employees in same mosque due to security reasons.

 

 

muhammad asad chaudhry