By Nasir Iqbal
The Capital Development Authority (CDA) plans to demolish 38 slums in different sectors of the city though it recognizes 10 katchi abadis with a total of 3,805 housing units as regularized.
In a report submitted to the Supreme Court, the civic agency stated that the plan to demolish the illegal settlements had been approved by the interior ministry, the chief commissioner office.
Besides, in February 2014 the Islamabad High Court had also issued directions in this regard. The Supreme Court is seized with a petition moved by academicians, trade unionists and slum dwellers of Sector I-11 seeking a declaration that the state was duty bound to provide the evicted people shelters and other amenities under the Constitution.
Moved by senior counsel Abid Hassan Minto and his son Bilal Minto, the petitioners expressed serious concerns over the mode and manner employed to evict the residents of Sector I-11 katchi abadi by the CDA on July 30.
The report was submitted in compliance with the August 26 directions of the apex court which had restrained the capital administration from taking any action similar to the July 30 bulldozing of the I-11 slum. It had also sought details of the CDA plan about the fate of the other slums.
In its report, the CDA stated that the execution of the plan to demolish katchi abadis would be made in four phases. But the CDA has provided no time frame to execute the plan.
Under phase I, the slums to be knocked down are: Street 17 of Sector I-10/1, Sector H-11/2 Kashmir Highway, Roshan Colony Sector I-12, Christian Colony Sector G-6/1-4, Dhobi Ghat G-6/2, Sector F-8/1 Nazimuddin Road, Green Belt H-12 and I-12 behind NUST, Muzaffar Colony H-11/4, Musharraf Colony G-8/4, Muhallah Dori Bagh, Miskeen Colony G-8/4, Shopper Colony G-7 Markaz, Sector H-9 and Bari Imam Katchi Abadi.
Likewise, 11 katchi abadis will be removed under phase IL They are: Chak Shahzad (PIA), Chak Shahzad Pona Fagiran, Dhoke Pathan Chamber Road Abadi, Dhoke Pathan (Sahila), Khanna Pull, New Shkrial katchi abadi, Shams Colony Bhangra Road, Rawat, Sumbal at Korak Town, Junejo Colony, Mohriyan and NIH Colony.
Five similar colonies are slated to be demolished under phase III.
They are: Bheka Syedan F-11, Sectors G-12, F-12, E-12 behind Khushian Wali Sarkar and I-11/2 Bakra and Surain.In phase IV, the slums to be removed are located at Sectors G-7/1, G-7/2 (66 quarters), G-7/3-2 (48 quarters), F-6/2, F-7/4 France Colony, Hansa Colony G-8/1, Essa Nagri I-9/1 and Muslim Colony, Bari Imam.
Referring to the July 30 operation against the slum in Sector I-11, the report explained that the CDA had acquired the area through award for land in 1968 and the allotment of plots started in 1989 to the affected local people. But due to the illegal occupation of the land, the possession of the plots could not be handed over to those who had been allotted the plots.
The report said in pursuance of the 1997 cabinet decision, the CDA decided to recognise such settlements that existed up to December 1995. Detailed physical and socioeconomic surveys were then conducted of such settlements and a list of bona fide dwellers was prepared in consultation with the local committees.