Islamabad - An incomplete boundary wall of a newly constructed girls’ degree college in Bhara Kahu due to an ongoing land dispute has led to trepidation among parents, who have urged the education department officials to take steps to enhance security for female students.

The first ever girls degree college in Kot Hatial, a neighbourhood of Bhara Kahu, was constructed recently. Almost the whole building complex is complete. It has one auditorium, 16 classrooms, one library and an administration block.

However, the front boundary wall remains incomplete due to a land dispute. Still, the administration has decided to open the school in April next year. Parents fear the lack of proper security arrangements can make the female students victims of harassment by trespassers and eve teasers.

“Instead of giving education, it might lead to a mishap,” Khalid Mehmood, a parent and resident of the neighbourhood said.

Last year’s attack on Army Public School in Peshawar also weighs heavily on the minds of parents. The school building also lacks proper security check posts and barbed wires.

The building was completed after a gap of ten years. Initially conceived in 2003, official red tape caused the long delay, causing massive inconvenience to the local female students.

Earlier, local girls, keen to get higher education, faced two choices: either to enrol in colleges far away or take exams privately. Furthermore, lack of proper and safe transportation added to the difficulties of those female students who decided to take admissions in colleges in other parts of the capital.

The opening of the degree college was supposed to be good news for locals, who are eager to get education. But the lacklustre attitude of the education department officials to address concerns over the boundary wall and lingering land dispute has led to frustration, both in the parents and students.

Last week, students held a protest at the school site.

Some locals have staked their claim over land in front of the school, forcing the school officials to leave the front boundary wall incomplete.

The Federal Directorate of Education, however, maintains that it owns the land. Officials say 30 kanals of land along the main Murree Road in Kot Hatial was purchased for the construction of the college from Capital Development Authority at the cost of Rs 12 million.

Officials say they have written to the CDA time to resolve the property dispute time and again but the authority is refusing to take any action.

A court case over property ownership is also ongoing.

A boys’ school in Sihala faces the same predicament as its land is under contention after being encroached upon by an influential local landlord.

“The Prime Minister of Pakistan should take personal interest in resolution of issues related to Bhara Kahu and Sihala colleges,” Prof Manzar Zafar Kazmi, President Federal Government College Teachers Association (FGCTA) said.

Despite repeated attempts, CDA Spokesperson Ramzan Sajid was not available for comments.