Islamabad: The Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (Pak-EPA) has ordered to immediately stop work on the Khayaban-e-Margalla project and ordered to follow environmental laws to avoid any legal action.
The Pak-EPA sent a letter titled “Construction of Khyaban-e-Margalla” on December 16 to the Capital Development Authority (CDA) and ordered to immediately stop all types of development activities and if orders are not followed, legal action will be taken. under the Pakistan Environment Protection Act 1997.
The letter stated that it was a mandatory legal provision to obtain approval under Section 12 of the Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency Act 1997 before the start of the project.
He pointed out that the construction work of the project was started in violation of the mandatory provision of the law and is punishable under Section 17 of the Pakistan Environment Protection Act 1997.
“It has been observed by the Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency that you have commenced construction activities at your project site and based on the information received/investigation conducted, this agency is of the opinion that you have prima facie violated the provisions of Section 12 of the Pakistan Environmental Protection Act, 1997,” the letter read.
Khayaban-i-Margalla is the main road of the capital which is part of the master plan prepared by the Greek company Doxiadis Associates in 1960. According to the master plan, it starts from GT Road and after passing through various areas touches Constitution Avenue before moving towards Bari Imam to culminate on Murree Road at Bhara Kahu. Four residential sectors – C-13, C-14, C-15 and C-16 – fall on this road which would be completed at a cost of Rs 970 million.
It was to be completed in 2013, however, for various reasons including owning land in one part, the contractor after carrying out basic works, abandoned the project. The letter said the Pak-EPA had issued a show cause notice on October 27, 2021 to the ADC on which it was assured that all requirements would be met in accordance with environmental laws.