LAHORE: Lahore district administration had 673 kanals of state land freed from the clutches of illegal occupants during the government’s on-going drive against encroachments.
On Wednesday, the district administration retrieved commercial and agriculture state land during raids in five different. During the operation, they demolished shops, concrete structures, residential properties and tube wells. Estimates suggested the price of the property recovered from encroachers and land grabbers was above Rs1.58 billion.
A spokesman of the district administration highlighted that an anti-encroachment team, under the supervision of City Assistant Commissioner Safdar Virk, took action in Moza Begum Kot. It retrieved 104 kanals of government worth over Rs100 million. District administration officials removed tube wells and levelled the area with the help of tractor and other heavy machinery.
Similarly, an anti-encroachment team raided Hanjarwal area on Multan Road and vacated 12 kanals and 5 marlas of commercial land from illegal occupants. As per market price, this commercial land has worth of over Rs860 million.
During two separate raids in tehsil Raiwind, Moza Bhai Kot, the district administration officials retrieved 18 kanals and 6 marlas of estate land. The operation was conducted under the supervision of Raiwind Assistant Commissioner Asim Saleem and heavy machinery was used to demolish concrete structures. Estimates suggested the market worth of this piece of land was over Rs20 million.
In another raid on Moza Acho Gill, the district administration vacated 400 kanals of agricultural land having worth of Rs400 million. Shalimar Assistant Commissioner Zaheer Liaqat was supervisiing the operation. Similarly, Cantt Assistant Commissioner Haider Abbas Wattoo, along with his team, conducted an operation in Thela Gilla area and retrieved 140 kanals of state land from illegal occupants. The land had an estimated value of Rs200 million.
Lahore Deputy Commissioner appreciated the efforts of the district administration and ordered officials to continue the operation on Thursday (today). He urged them to retrieve every inch of state land from illegal occupants.
Meanwhile, the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) continued its operation against encroachments and land grabbing in different areas of the city. On the orders of LDA Director General Amna Imran Khan, the authority established two complaint centers at the land retrieved from illegal occupants. These complaint centers were established on PIA Road in Johar Town and Sabzazar Housing Scheme to address grievances of citizens. The authority has also deployed necessary staff at these complaint centers to receive and tend to public complaints and all matters related to the on-going anti-encroachment drive.
As per government estimates, over 31,000 kanals of state land was illegally occupied by land grabbers and encroachers in the provincial capital. This included over 280 acres of forest department land, eight plots in the Walled City of Lahore Authority (WCLA), 636 kanals of LDA land and 32 plots of the Metropolitan Corporation Lahore (MCL). However, a major chunk of the government land was recovered from illegal occupants during the government’s campaign.
All government agencies concerned, including the LDA, district administration, the WCLA and the MCL, were conducting operations in different areas of the city. During recent weeks, the LDA conducted a mega operation against encroachments in Johar Town, PIA Road, Sabzazar, Multan Road, Bahira Town, Anarkali, Urdu Bazaar, Harbanspura, Daroghawala and several other areas of the provincial metropolis. They recovered thousands of kanals of state land from illegal occupants.