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Allotment of park land to seminary stopped
03-07-2012, 01:04 PM
Post: #1
Allotment of park land to seminary stopped
Allotment of park land to seminary stopped

RAWALPINDI, March 6: The local administration had to right the wrong regarding allotment of a public park land to a seminary on the intervention of a member of the National Assembly (MNA).

The Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) allotted about two kanals of Dasara Park near Eidgah to the seminary in Sherpao Colony, Dhoke Chiraghdin, without consulting the governing body. However, the MNA took up the matter with the authority concerned on the complaints of the local residents.

It may be noted that the RDA and in-charge of Madressah Ishayat-i-Islam Qari Abdul Rehman had been fighting a legal battle in the Supreme Court over allotment of a plot to the seminary during the regime of military dictator Ziaul Haq.

“The seminary in-charge won the case in the apex court which asked the RDA to allot the seminary a plot. The RDA had no plot available, so it decided to allocate this plot to the seminary. This was not a park but a plot allocated for educational purposes which was converted into a park to save it from encroachment,” said officials in the RDA land department.

In the meantime, they added, the RDA filed a review petition with the Supreme Court which was still pending.

The MNA, Malik Shakeel Awan, told Dawn that on the complaints of the local people, he wrote to District Coordination Officer (DCO) Saqib Zafar as he was chairman of the RDA governing body. He said tampering with parks was violation of a Supreme
Court order and also against the Punjab chief minister’s directives to maintain public parks.

However, the DCO said it was just a proposal and the RDA had not allotted the park land to the seminary. He said he stopped the plan and instructed the civic agency to get approval from him before planning such schemes in future.

Dasara Park was constructed in the 80s and provides recreational activities to women and children. Former district nazim Tariq Kiani refurbished the park in 2004. “A few days back, some RDA employees came to the park and demarcated the land after
uprooting the board of Women Park installed at the main gate. The residents approached the MNA with a complaint,” said Mrs Masood Ahmed, a resident and daily visitor to the park, while talking to Dawn at the site.

She said they had expressed resentment over the move. She lived in the locality for the last 25 years and comes to the park daily for morning and evening walks. Borjan Bibi, another regular visitor to the park, said the government should save the park.

More than 100 women and children daily visited the park. She said she also had signed the application submitted to the MNA.

Mohammad Ali Khan, another resident, said local women had no other facility as other parks were far away from the locality.

He said the park had been providing recreational facility to their families for the last 30 years.

“We will not change the status of the park over the plot though it was meant for educational purposes according to our documents,” said RDA director general Chaudhry Mohammad Naseer.

To a question about the demarcation and removal of the nameplate of the park by the RDA officials, he said he was in Lahore when the incident took place. An inquiry has been directed against the officials who were responsible for this, he added.
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