CAA fails to evict illegal occupants: New airport land
By Baqir Sajjad Syed
ISLAMABAD, Aug 3: The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has failed to take over the land for the New Islamabad International Airport despite making full payments to the land-holders, thus putting it in an awkward position, as the date for the stone- laying ceremony is drawing closer.
“Occupation of land is one of the biggest hindrances to making preparations for the stone-laying ceremony, which has been tentatively scheduled for September 6,” an official source said, adding the project would be inaugurated either by President Pervez Musharraf or Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.
A total of 3,241 acres, four kanals and 16 marlas of land has been acquired for this project, which includes both the private- owned and state land. The authority has made full payments according to the revised awards but some of the owners are not leaving the place and are demanding more money.
The acquisition process was initiated in 1986/87 and a total award of Rs175 million was announced, but subsequent revisions in the awards, some on the court orders, and acquisition of some more land took this amount to Rs631 million in 2005, when the CAA was all set to start the project.
The CAA made these acquisitions over the years starting 1986/87, but what they failed to do was to evict the occupants from their lands after making full payments. The occupants continued to live in the area, while CAA did nothing to get it vacated, what it now calls it a “goodwill gesture” towards the local people, who even used the sold land for growing crops during this period.
But when the project got underway in March this year and the activity started at the site to make preparations for the stone- laying of the project, the management began to realise the cost of its “goodwill gesture”. It had to pay for the built-up structures and standing crops and trees that had been grown in CAA’s property, but under the occupation of the previous owners.
The CAA has now started using the services of law-enforcement agencies, its own security services and contacts with the elders of the area to resolve the issue.
time to kick these farmers out for the better of the country just like they do in the USA.