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Lahore: LDA preparing its own commercialization policy

LAHORE – The LDA is deadly engaged in preparing its own new commercialization policy in its controlled area challenging the Punjab government’s clear directions to every institution to desist taking any initiative regarding formation of policy unless new government comes into power, The Nation learnt here on Wednesday.

The LDA authorities are working day in, day out to finalize all modalities and terms to get the commercialization policy passed and executed before the formation of new government in Punjab.

Sources informed that last month LDA had issued its commercialization policy by amending the previous one in its governing body meeting. But the interim Punjab government stopped them to put into force saying that no authority in any institution is supposed to derive any policy. Sources disclosed that the caretaker Punjab government said that it would be prerogative of the new provincial government to decide or configure the policies in accordance with new demands.

But the LDA authorities started preparing a new policy to reap the personal benefits, sources disclosed. As transitional period carries no proper check and balance, so whether any administrative step is taken or policies are amended, no one could be held responsible of wrongdoing. Taking full advantage of the situation, authorities concerned have geared up its efforts to announce the policy before the process of transfer of power is completed and fresh government assumes its charge in Punjab.

Sources said that officials of commercialization branch in LDA had prepared the briefing for Director General for the proposed new commercialization policy. The policy would be tabled in the meeting of Board of Governor to get it passed.

According to new policy being prepared by the LDA, three stars hotels, residential apartments, flats, shopping malls, plazas, markets, departmental stores, financial institutes, showrooms, restaurants, parking plazas, business institutions would be constructed in those areas declared as commercial areas.

The district government and towns administration would be empowered to allow the construction of buildings of research institutes on at least four kanals land, marriage halls, cinemas, theatres, auditoriums, concert halls, big halls for exhibition, petrol pumps, Bus and truck terminals, private hospitals.
The same authority would be empowered to allow the construction of cottage and light industry, warehouses and storages in industrial areas.

While in industrial areas, no one will be permitted to start the business of storing and manufacturing of explosive material like ammunition, fireworks, gunpowder, phosphorous, dynamite and other inflammatory substances.
According to outline of the policy, commercialization fee would be reduced to help boost business activities.

As much as twenty percent was charged over the market rate to convert any land into commercial land in past. Now it will be reduced to 10 percent. Besides Rs 2000 were charged as processing fee. It would be waived off completely.

Map fee will be fixed for Rs 5. According to rules, in approved residential schemes, commercial activities will be banned. Schools, colleges, universities, homeopathic and allopathic clinics, health care, dispensaries, poly clinics, dental clinics which will be working in residential areas will not face commercialization fee. Natural parks, wild life, forests and historical places will not face commercialization fee. No body will be allowed to reside in commercial areas.

Source: The Nation

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