Bahria Town is Restrained from Undertaking Development Activities

Bahria Town is Restrained from Undertaking Development Activities Board of Revenue Case Laws Civil Law Knowledge - Civil Law Land Exchange Land Grabbers Land Revenue Litigation & Arbitration Real Estate Restraint Order Solutions - Civil Law Suo Motu Supreme Court Mr. Justice Amir Hani Muslim and Mr. Justice Mushir Alam have passed order and Bahria Town is restrained from undertaking development activities in C.M.A No. 376-K of 2014 etc in SMC No. 16 of 2011.

1. The Prosecutor General, NAB, has filed interim report dated 25.07.2016 (confidential), alongwith a copy of the survey report dated 20.07.2016, prepared by the Ministry of Defence, Directorate of Survey of Pakistan. It is contended by the learned Prosecutor General, NAB, that after the order dated 24.05.2016, passed by this Court, the Survey of Pakistan, was approached by the NAB, for demarcation of the land in actual possession of the Bahria Town.

2. The Director of Survey of Pakistan responded to the request of the NAB and after notices to the Board of Revenue Sindh, Survey and Settlement Department, Sindh, Malir Development Authority (M.DA.), Deputy Commissioner, Malir, and the Bahria Town Karachi, conducted joint survey in presence of the representatives of the aforesaid organizations and compiled report, copy of which was supplied to the NAB authorities and has been placed before us. The Senior Member, Board of Revenue, states that they have not received any copy of the said report. We direct the NAB authorities to supply copies of the survey report to the Senior Member, Board of Revenue, Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan, learned Sr.ASC, for officials of Bahria Town, Mr. K.A Wahab, AOR for the Bahria Town and Syed Mehmood Akhter Naqvi, the Applicant, who request to file their objections if they deem it appropriate. The confidential report dated 25.07.2016 submitted by the NAB, shall be kept in sealed envelopes by the office.

3. According to the survey report, the M.D.A has exchanged/ consolidated 9140.260 Acres of land to Bahria Town. The survey report contains a portion of green colour with black lines, reflecting that M.D.A has consolidated a piece of land measuring 244.925 Acres which the Bahria Town has not yet developed. The survey report further shows that the total land consolidated by the M.D.A and handedover to the Bahria Town is 9385.185 Acres. The portion marked with pink colour as “A” reflects that the Bahira Town has developed 386.276 Acres of land which has not yet been consolidated by the M.D.A. The portion of survey report in pink colour marked as “B” reflects that Bahria Town has developed an area of 1975.059 Acres which though developed by the Bahria Town has not been consolidated by the M.D.A. Another portion of the survey report marked as “C” in pink colour shows that the land measuring 410.444 Acres has been developed by the Bahria Town, but has not been consolidated by the M.D.A. The survey report shows that total land developed/under development but not consolidated by the M.D.A comes to 2771.79 Acres. In this respect, total area of land of Bahria Town reflected in the survey report comes to 12156.964 Acres.

4. We have inquired from the Chief Secretary, Senior Member, Board of Revenue, and the Advocate General, Sindh, to satisfy us under which law the M.D.A is competent to exchange private lands with the lands falling in the area which is reserved as corridor area, they could not offer any explanation and submit that no such powers are available with the M.D.A to allot or exchange the private land with the State land. It has come on record that no portion of the land pertaining to the subject matter has ever been allotted and or part in possession under Section 10(4) of the Colonization of Government Lands Act, 1894, by the Sindh Government to the M.D.A, which fact was confirmed by the Senior Member, Board of Revenue and incorporated in the order of this Court dated 09.03.2016, which reads as under:

“We are informed by the Chief Secretary, Sindh that the Sr. Member, Board of Revenue has proceeded to Islamabad on account of some family emergency and will be back by today evening. Since the matter relates to the Board of Revenue, therefore, we deem it necessary that he should appear before the Court tomorrow before any Order is passed in this matter. We are further informed that in compliance with the Order passed yesterday, Mr. Muhammad Sohail who was assigned the look after as D.G. MDA has been de-notified. The Sindh Government is directed to appoint any officer of their choice, eligible for the post of D.G. MDA, within one week. In the intervening period, the Secretary, Local Government will have the additional charge.

3. We restrained the MDA from allotting and/or dealing with the land in any manner whatsoever till further orders. The Sr. Member, Board of Revenue yesterday, while present in Court, has disputed the authority of the MDA to allot or otherwise deal with the land with anyone as, according to him, the land was neither allotted nor given possession to the MDA. According to the Sr. Member, Board of Revenue, the land within MDA is fully owned by Sindh Government. Beside the aforesaid reason, this Court on 28.11.2012 has passed restraining order restricting the powers of authority from allotting state land to anyone. This restraining order also applies to all the authorities under Sindh Government who claimed their title from the state/Board of Revenue.”

5. After going through the survey report dated 20.07.2016, we, in order to safeguard the public interest and to avoid multitude of proceedings, are constrained to pass the following interim order:

(i) the Bahria Town is restrained from undertaking any development activity in the area demarcated with green colour with black lines on it measuring 244.925 Acres and or to deal with this portion of land with any person or organization in any manner whatsoever;

(ii) the Bahria Town is further restrained from undertaking any development activity on the portion marked as “A” with pink colour measuring 386.276 Acres, which is not consolidated by the M.D.A, with further restriction to deal with this portion of the land in any manner whatsoever;

(iii) the Bahria Town is restrained from undertaking any development activity on the area marked as “B” with pink colour measuring 1975.059 Acres, which as per survey report has not been consolidated by the M.D.A and to deal with the land in any manner whatsoever;

(iv) the Bahria Town is further restrained from undertaking any further development activity on the area marked as “C” with pink colour measuring 410.444 acres and or to deal with the land in any manner whatsoever;

(v) the Bahria Town is further restrained from raising any further development activity in area measuring 2771.779 Acres, which has not been consolidated by the M.D.A and to deal with the land in question in any manner whatsoever;

(vi) the M.D.A is restrained from consolidating any further portion of the private land of the Bahria Town or any other private enterprise under the garb of exchange of land in exercise of their powers conferred on them under the M.D.A Act or the Rules framed thereunder;

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