RAWALPINDI: The controversy surrounding the Rawalpindi Ring Road project continues, as it has been alleged that the record of the land to be acquired for the project in tehsil Gujar Khan has disappeared.
A senior district administration official told Dawn that the land record of a mouza (village) in Gujar Khan adjacent to the tehsil of Rawalpindi is absent, creating difficulties in maintaining the record for the land acquisition for the Ring Road.
“In 2002, a fire broke out in the record chamber for district judicial and land revenue cases, and the documents may have been destroyed. “However, three assistant commissioners have been tasked with verifying the record with the relevant tehsil’s land revenue officials,” the official added.
According to him, the Gujar Khan assistant commissioner is responsible for reviewing the Banth to Qutb Ferozwala record in Gujar Khan. The Saddar AC will examine the record from Losar to Mian Ahmada, whereas the Cantonment AC will examine the record from Khasala Khurd to Thalian.
ACs are entrusted with reviewing the revenue record of a Gujar Khan village whose land records are missing.
However, Commissioner Liaquat Ali Chatha denied that the land document was unavailable. According to him, land procurement has not yet begun, though some land has been acquired in the past.
He added that the department of land revenue will shortly provide the pertinent record to the Project Management Unit.
Acquisition of property
In contrast, the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) land branch and district land revenue department began surveying the region.
The process of acquiring land has not yet begun. The RDA officials requested assistance from the district administration in determining the price for land acquisition.
“In the initial survey, 36 villages’ land will be included in the initiative. Gujar Khan contains eight villages (mouzas), while Rawalpindi contains the remaining villages (tehsils).
The comprehensive survey will provide information on the land and structures affected by the project, according to the RDA official.
According to him, the district price assessment committee established land prices, and Section 4 was enacted in March 2022, but land prices varied throughout the district.
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In a meeting with Thalian residents, however, Commissioner Chatha assured them that the government would acquire their property at market value.
The residents of the villages along the route from G.T. Road to the Motorway, whose land is expected to be included in the project, were concerned about the price of land due to rumours that the government would acquire the land at old rates, despite the fact that land prices had risen dramatically over the past year.
According to the proposal from the previous year, the RRR project is a 38.3 km controlled access road that begins at Banth on National Highway 5 (N-5), crosses Chakbeli Road, Adiala Road, and Chakri Road, and ends at Thallian Interchange on Interstate 2 (I-2).
The total cost of the project is Rs33.7 billion, including Rs27 billion for construction, and Rs6.7 billion for land acquisition while the total length of the main carriageway is 38.3km. The civil works consist of a 90-meter-long fencerow, grade-separated interchanges, bridges, underpasses, toll plazas, and weighbridges.