HC halts Ashiyan City project activitiesStaff Correspondent
The High Court on Wednesday asked the government to stop immediately all activities, including selling plots, earth-filing and advertisement, of housing project Ashiyan City.
The bench of Justice Mirza Hussain Haider and Justice Muhammad Khurshid Alam Sarkar also asked the government to execute the high court verdict delivered on December 8, 2011 asking the authorities to stop
earth-filing, selling of plots, and advertisement of all the housing projects not approved by the Rajdhani Unnayan Kartipakkha.
The court also stayed for six months the operation of the Rajuk’s approval for Ashiyan City’s land development and the site clearance certificate given by the Department of Environment for the Ashiyan City’s 55 acres of land and reducing the fine to Tk 5 lakh from the previous Tk 50 lakh, which was imposed on Ashiyan by the department on charge of filling wet land.
The court also asked the government to explain in four weeks why the approval and site clearance certificate would not be declared illegal.
The court passed the order after hearing a public interest litigation writ petition filed jointly by Ain o Salish Kendra, Association for Land Reforms and Development, Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association, Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust, Bangladesh Paribesh Andolan, Institute of Architects Bangladesh, Nijera Kori and Paribesh Bachao Andolan.
The secretaries to the housing and public works, land, environment, home and information ministries, Rajuk chairman, department of environment’s director general and its director (monitoring and enforcement), Dhaka deputy commissioner and Ashiyan City’s managing director have been made respondents in the petition.
The court also asked the Ashiyan City’s managing director to submit to it all documents concerning the approval of the project.
The project authorities were also asked to submit a list of plots sold so far along with specification of lands.
The court also directed Rajuk to submit a detailed report on justification to the amendments to the Private Housing Project Land Development Rules 2004 and also the process that was followed in approving the amendment.
The Rajuk was also asked to submit a list of projects approved without 100 per cent ownership of lands in the proposed area.
The court asked the authorities to arrange restoration of the 230.46 acres of original wet land filled up by the Ashiyan city illegally for its project situated in Dakkhin Khan and Barua Mouzas in Uttara in the city.
The petitioners’ counsel Iqbal Kabir told the court that though the Ashiyan City had Rajuk’s approval of 43.11 acres of land but it was developing its projects on 230.46 acres.
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