Motorway construction: Land owners challenge property acquisition

Petitioners claim ownership of land in Thano Bula Khan taluka some 61 kilometres from Hyderabad on Super Highway


Our Correspondent June 30, 2016
Sindh High Court. PHOTO: EXPRESS

HYDERABAD: The Sindh High Court has put the National Highway Authority (NHA), Frontier Works Organisation and other respondents on notice in a petition challenging forced acquisition of a private property for the M9 Motorway project. The petitioners, Baqar Khan and Ashok Kumar, also alleged that they are being harassed.

The petitioners claim ownership of a piece of land, bought in 1997 in Thano Bula Khan taluka some 61 kilometres from Hyderabad on Super Highway. They operate a fuel station, hotel, service station and some shops on the land.

According to the petitioners, the federal ministry of communication and NHA served them a notice to remove the construction but they challenged it in court. During the proceedings the ministry and NHA assured that the notice would be withdrawn and no action would be taken for removal of property on the assurance that he would withdraw the case, they added.

“From 1999 to September 2016, the petitioners have been peacefully running their business,” the petition reads. However, on September 10, the M9 Motorway project director again served a notice to the petitioners for the demolition of structures due to alleged encroachment.

The petitioners alleged that the project director and Masood Anwar, an official working for a private company which is part of the projects, are harassing them. They pleaded the court declare the notice null and void, order that the respondents cannot acquire the property without paying due compensation and to stop harassment.

The court ordered the respondents to stop harassing the petitioners and asked them to submit reply on July 21.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2016.

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