LAHORE: The Defence Housing Authority (DHA) administration has termed the DHA Residents Association an illegal body. It announced it would take legal action against the association, which is defending its right to exist and told Daily Times that representatives from the DHA visit meetings and annual events organised by the association.

DHA Spokesman Tajamul Hussain Anjum said on Wednesday the authority’s administration had taken strict notice of the activities of some residents by claiming to a have a union, and trying to pressurise the administration into changing the system.

Action: “It is illegal to have a residents union or association. The authority has decided to take legal action against every member of the facility,” Anjum said, adding that such unions could be made in other societies, but the DHA was run under different laws and had a different type of administration. He said the presence of a DHA official in any of their activities did not mean that the association was legal. Anjum did not provide any details of the legal action the authority planned to take against the association, but said the administration and their legal advisers were working on the issue. He said the DHA would announce the case’s particulars soon.

Legal: However, the association’s outgoing president Rohail Ikram said the association was totally legal and a registered body of the DHA’s residents. He said the association had been working since 1982. He said: “We have been working in the area for more than two decades and if the administration thinks the association was up to something illegal then why didn’t any of their previous officials do anything?”

He said the law Anjum had been referring to was suspended about five years ago, adding that the association’s members were fully aware about their legal and social rights. He said the association did not want any conflict to emerge between them and the administration, adding that it just wanted to voice the resident’s suggestions and complaints to the authority.

Newly-elected President Mohammad Sadiq and former information secretary said the association was fully aware of what it was doing, adding that the association was only working for the DHA’s residents’ welfare. They said the association had around 6,000 members, adding that most of them were intent on having a say in the authority’s decision-making process. They said the association would continue its struggle for having more of a say in the affairs of the DHA, adding that they would call on an association meeting to discuss the issues facing it.

Source: Daily Times