KARACHI: The Defence Housing Authority (DHA) has promised to restart stalled development work in Phase VII as it put aside bitter relations with the residents who had gone to court.
DHA will build roads and install street lights at Khayaban-e-Saadi, Khayaban-e-Rizwan and Khayaban-e-Abbasi, said Ghulam Mujtaba Khan, the president of the Saadi Rizwan Abbasi Residents Trust.
“We had a meeting with DHA officials on Tuesday and have been assured that development work will start immediately. This is great news for us since we have fought hard for this,” he told The Express Tribune. Residents of these areas, which are located along Khayaban-e-Ittehad, have been fighting a legal battle against DHA over land prices.
DHA had bought around 286 acres from the Sindh government, which realized after 14 years that it had made a cheap deal, said Khan. “The Sindh government asked DHA to pay Rs1.4 billion more. In turn, DHA tried to recover the money from residents. It demanded the owners of a 300-sq-yard plot to pay Rs600,000 and of a 500-sq-yd plot Rs1.1 million. Our contention is that plots and houses have changed hands three times on average. Why are existing owners being penalised?”
DHA is also fighting a case on the matter with the Sindh government. The trust represents around 450 houses and plots.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2012.