Islamabad - The circumstances are leading to a forcible eviction of the illegal occupants from sector I-11 as the occupants are demanding alternate plots from the CDA for voluntary eviction which the latter is not agreeing upon.

“As per CDA rules, the occupants of the I-11 katchi abadi could not be compensated as they occ upy the CDA land illegally. A team of CDA would start eviction of the illegal occupants from today (Thursday) as it has also requested for more police force to conduct operation in the area,” said a senior officer at the CDA lamenting that all the efforts for a peaceful settlement of the issue have failed.

Sources in the CDA told The Nation on Wednesday that former and sitting public representatives from Islamabad, besides Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazal) and Awami National Party, are pressurising the authorities concerned to take a lenient view as the authorities are planning to evict the illegal occupants from I-11 slum at any cost. “Despite all the pressures, the CDA teams would be at the slum site early on Thursday morning to clean the area as negotiations for peaceful settlement of the issue have almost failed,” said the officer who is part of the operation planning team. Local administration and CDA high-ups on Wednesday also visited the site but to no avail.

The CDA teams including enforcement directorate, emergency and disaster management, sanitation wing, CDA CARES and Capital Hospitals aided by the law enforcement agencies have had to lay off their eviction plan on Wednesday after a large number of dwellers agitated.

The illegal occupants continued their protest for the third consecutive day on Wednesday against the eviction plan. The sources said that particularly the JUI-F and sitting MNA from Islamabad Asad Umer are advocating for a lenient view towards those who have been residing there (I-11 slum) before 2005.

JUI-F’s Mufti Abdullah and Asad Umer had recently met CDA chairman perhaps with an assurance that they would not support all those settlers who settled there after 2005, said the sources. “But we would not get into any discrimination as all are illegally occupying the state land,” the officer said.

On the other hand, the CDA officials fear that in case the authorities decided to run the bulldozer and machinery, several casualties are expected from both sides, said a report prepared by the authority. The CDA is to submit a report on the issue in the IHC on July 31.

Around 1,300 illegal settlements exist in the slum.

Some migrated here from Swat when the war on terror began there. Almost 95 per cent of the population residing here is Pakistani, while only 5 per cent are Afghans. Majority of the occupant families hails from tribal areas and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Around 3,000 dwellers hail from Mohmand Agency, 400 from Bajaur Agency, 1,200 from Mardan, 1,000 from Peshawar, 450 from Charsadda, 400 from Swabi, 250 from Dir, 100 from Nowshera, 600 from Punjab, 300 from Hangu, Mansehra, Swat, Chitral, Batagram, Buner, Lakki Marwat, Kohistan, Kohat and other KP areas.

While 1,022 registered Afghan refugees and 254 non-registered refugees are also residing there. As many as 1,300 families comprise 9,000 members.

In the past too, slum dwellers settled at I-11/1 repeatedly repelled eviction drive by the CDA. An enforcement team of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) along with a large number of police personnel on Monday failed to launch an operation to remove the I-11 slum after a seven-hour-long face-off with the dwellers. Police officials, representatives of the dis trict administration and the CDA team remained there for almost seven hours but did not move an inch to remove the slum. On the other hand, hundreds of residents, including children, stood outside the slum to resist any operation. In 2013 also, CDA had decided to make forcible eviction of around 8,000 residents of the I-11 katchi abadi but the plan could not be materialised due to stiff resistance from the dwellers.

The CDA is adamant that 1,200 plots allotted by the CDA in 1990 must be cleared of illegal residents and handed over to the plot owners.