K-P govt sizes up OBL compound for possession

Legal process for claiming the plot is already under way.

Muhammad Sadaqat July 20, 2012


The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government will take over possession of the Abbottabad compound —where al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden lived until his killing in May 2011 — if the land goes unclaimed within the next 15 days.

The legal requirements for taking possession of the plot are already under process, sources at the revenue department told The Express Tribune on Thursday.

The house where Bin Laden lived was razed to the ground by civil authorities after a raid by US Navy Seals last year in February.

According to official sources at the office of the district officer revenue (DOR), they have received instructions from the revenue office of Peshawar, saying that the 38,000 sq meters of land should be taken over and its utility would be decided later.

One of the legal requirements includes publishing a notice for the general public asking the owner, if any, to submit identity proof to the revenue department within 15 days claiming the plot.

The notice that was published by the revenue department in different newspapers says that in case no one claims the ownership right to the plot, the provincial government would eventually take over the property.

The source said no one has yet approached the office of DOR claiming ownership of the plot. The source added that the government would have to hand over the property even if someone claimed it after 100 years.

According to the revenue record, the property rights of this land were transferred in the name of Arshad, son-of-Naqab Khan, a resident of Charsada during 2003.

Arshad and his brother Tariq, reportedly two couriers, were killed in the US raid and since their identity and address of their native village are still unknown, nobody has so far claimed the property rights.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 20th, 2012.