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February 12, 2019

New Balakot City: Member of SC formed body says stakeholders failed to develop project


February 12, 2019

MANSEHRA: The Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Authority (Erra), district administration, police and other stakeholders have failed to develop New Balakot City housing project in accordance with the apex court ruling.

Munir Hussain Laghmani, the member of the committee constituted by the Supreme Court in a suo moto notice taken last year, told reporters on Monday. “All the stakeholders, including Erra and district administration have committed before Supreme Court that they would retrieve new Balakot city project land occupied by locals but nothing happened practically in this regard,” he said.

He added that a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed by petitioner and respondents, including representatives of as many as 17 government departments, agreed possession of land acquired for Rs16 billion housing project being developed for settlement of survivor families of 2005 earthquake presently settled in makeshift abodes in red zone Balakot.

“Over a month has passed since the ruling of the court but no concrete step has been taken either by district administration or Erra as yet,” said Laghmani.

He said district administration and police had committed through MoU that they would ensure congenial atmosphere to Erra to develop the new Balakot City housing project but the situation on the ground was still tense and the latter couldn’t start developing the project.

“The Erra was ordered by the apex court to revise PC-1 of the project as the cost has been enhanced from Rs12 billion to Rs16 billion and get it approved from Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC)within 30 days but the time has already elapsed and no solid step initiated as yet,” the member said.

He said that chief secretary of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government being chairman of the committee was ordered to ensure all possible support of provincial government to the success of this project but that mega housing project was still in doldrums.

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