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CDA asked to report on food outlets in capital’s hills

ISLAMABAD – Directing the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to explain why and under what procedure space for restaurants in the city’s hilly areas had been allotted to various parties, the National Assembly Standing Committee on Environment asked the authority to submit a detailed report on why this environmentally dangerous action had been taken.

The NA body met on Saturday with its chairman MNA Raja Muhammad Asad Khan in the chair, who directed CDA Chairman Imtiaz Inayat Elahi to give a detailed report in a week about the growth of restaurants in the hilly areas of the capital and the procedure followed by CDA while allotting them lands. During the meeting, PML-Q MNA Nousheen Sayed asked CDA chairman to brief the committee about the space allotted for restaurants. She said, “How and to whom these lucrative plots for restaurants had been allotted. Was the land allotted through proper procedure and open tenders or were these plots handed out on political grounds.”

The CDA chairman told the committee that he would give a presentation on the issue within a week. “I don’t exactly know how the plots were allotted, as some of them were operational before I took charge,” Elahi added. Nousheen said that there were reports that the plots had been allotted in violation of rules. Moreover, committee also discussed zoning issue of Zone-III and Zone IV of Islamabad and the environmental hazards while developing the zones.

The CDA chairman told the committee that CDA had taken over the zone regulation of Zone-IV last year in accordance with the cabinet’s decision. He said CDA was strictly regulating development in Zone-IV keeping in view all environmental aspects. He said that CDA could not stop the construction on the private land as Supreme Court had barred the authority to do so. He said that CDA had two options either to acquire the private land in the zone or allow the people to carry on construction.

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