The Supreme Court ordered on Monday the demolition of all illegal buildings and structures in Murree within five days. A three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, while hearing a case on illegal buildings in Murree, also ordered the deputy commissioner (DC) to lend bulldozers for the purpose.
The chief justice also questioned the DC about the ownership of the illegal structures. “Who owns these illegal buildings? Who is responsible for these buildings? Please tell if illegal structures were built in Murree or not”. Illegal buildings are present in Murree since 2013, the DC informed the court. Chief Justice went on to say that authorities should not take political pressure and must take action against all the illegal constructions, “If the inspection team identifies any illegal building then there will be consequences. You have to prove that the country is run by rule of law,” he remarked. The apex court also took suo motu notice of illegal structures such as wedding halls and markets in Islamabad and summoned a list of all illegal structures in the federal capital from the Capital Development Authority.
It is ironic that Supreme Court has to push institutions to fulfill their responsibilities. Holding local body elections, conducted population census and many more responsibilities that elected government completed, were driven by the apex court. It has been witnessed that government was hiding behind the excuses to hold national census, until apex court gave the final warning to do so.
Once again apex court had to order to the concerned authorities to take action against illegal buildings that are mushrooming in the hill city of Murree. Issue of illegal constructions is not limited to one city; there is a long list of illegal structures in the capital city also. It is a serious issue that is destroying the natural beauty of city. It is also injustice to the people who abide by all the rules and regulations before any construction. Illegal structures don’t emerge overnight; owners of these properties enjoy full support of the concerned authorities. If there is not sense of impunity, who will invest massively on the construction of illegal structures. Concerned authorities need to find out black sheep in their departments and must take serious action against illegal construction activities.
Increased activity of illegal constructions describes the failure of concerned authorities to take any action.
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