Rawalpindi : The encroachment mafia has occupied streets, roads and footpaths in many areas of the city for years which speak volume about the inefficiency of the Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi...
Rawalpindi : The encroachment mafia has occupied streets, roads and footpaths in many areas of the city for years which speak volume about the inefficiency of the Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi that has literally failed to check this menace.
Even Deputy Commissioner (DC) Muhammad Ali has expressed concerns on the poor performance of Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) which to what he says has failed to remove encroachments in city areas for years.
“I will talk to Commissioner to start a proper crackdown not only against encroachment mafia but officials of MCR they are backing them,” Deputy Commissioner (DC) told ‘The News’ here on Thursday.
He said that citizens belonging to all walks of life particularly business community was upset due to ever-increasing encroachments all around. I am really concerned because MCR has failed to address this important issue in city, he claimed. “I am going to talk to Commissioner Rawalpindi Division Syed Gulzar Hussain Shah to resolve this issue permanently,” he assured.
All Pakistan Traders Association (Punjab) President Sharjeel Mir said that some three days back they met the Deputy Commissioner (DC) to resolve this issue because ever year there is a hike of over 20 per cent in the encroachments. The regulation department of Metropolitan Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) has failed to address this burning issue, he denounced. He said that all businesses have gone to the dogs due to ever-increasing encroachments in city areas. But, Deputy Commissioner has assured to resolve this issue permanently, he said.
The encroachment mafia is ruling the roost in Raja Bazaar, Bara Bazaar, Trunk Bazaar, China Market, Iqbal Road, City Saddar Road, Mochi Bazaar, Dalgaran Bazaar, Sadiqabad, Muslim Town, Commercial Market, Banni, Jamia Masjid Road, Asghar Mall Road, Faizabad, Double Road, Pirwadhai, Dhoke Mangtal, Dhoke Ratta, Gangmandi, Adiala Road and even Benazir Bhutto Road in city while Tench Bhatta, Chungi No.22 Road, Chur, Lal Kurti, Sher Zaman, Tulsa Road, Allabad Road, Saddar Bazaar, Hathi Chowk, Railway Road, Chota Bazaar and even Westridge Roads. The inhabitants of the city whereas the authorities concerned are only busy in hollow talk and taking no prompt action to wipe out this menace. Now, encroachment mafia has also occupied both sides of main Murree Road, Rawal Road, Double Road and Sixth Road. The residents of these localities while talking to this scribe said that encroachments were the main reason behind traffic jams throughout the city because encroachers virtually occupy half of the roads.
The locals have strongly criticized the Metropolitan Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) for making tall claims regarding removal of encroachments from the city. “Pushcart owners were responsible for traffic jams in the markets, as they set up their business anywhere they want. The whole city became neat and clean when Commissioner Rawalpindi Division visited but as soon as the concerned officer went off, all areas were re-occupied by the encroachment mafia, public denounced.
In 2010, the than Rawal Town administrator Muhammad Arshad Warraich completely removed encroachment mafia from city roads. But, encroachment mafia and plaza owners with the full backing of political leaders and the Rawal Town staff finally cornered Warraich, as he was made OSD at that time for cleansing the city of encroachers. Reliable sources informed ‘The News’ that all encroachment inspectors and other staff of (MCR) will be deprived of ‘monthly’ if the city is cleansed of encroachments.
It is worth mentioning here that patients in ambulances face difficulties in reaching District Headquarter Hospital (DHQ), Benazir Bhutto Hospital (BBH) and Holy Family Hospital (HFH) because of ever-increasing encroachments in front of hospitals. The ambulances could not reach hospitals in time due to encroachment mafia. The traffic is seen everywhere due to increasing encroachments in all areas.
Municipal Officer (Regulation) Imran Ali said that we are trying to remove all encroachments from all areas. “We are continuously taking action against encroachments in city areas, he said. He also said that enforcement staff was taking action against encroachment mafia on regular basis.