RAWALPINDI: The audit report revealed that the Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) does not have even a single competent building inspector in the department, which resulted in the non-implementation of rules and by-laws in letter & spirit.
According to local government service (appointment & conditions of services) rule, building inspector (BS-14) qualifications should be Matriculation (1st Division) with a diploma of associates engineering (civil/ architecture) from an institute recognized by the Punjab Board of Technical Education or other recognized institute.
The para-58 of the audit report stated, it was noticed that unqualified staff are working as building inspectors on rotation basis while duties related to this post are technical. As per PLGA qualification of inspector should be a three-year Diploma of Associate Engineer (DAE) but it was noticed that all deputed inspectors are under qualified which resulted in non-implementation of rules and by-laws in letter & spirit.
Sources said, the officials working as building inspectors are basically clerks by their designation but they are deputed as building inspectors either for having good relations with the political leadership or with the officers.
Sources said, building inspectors just issue a notice to the owner of the illegal construction to secure them from any departmental action, but after issuing the notice, they do not follow them.
Para 56 of the last audit report stated, scrutiny of the record revealed that a number of buildings were constructed in the jurisdiction of Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi illegally/ without approval from the competent forum in violation of Building & Zoning By-Laws, 2009 as per record of building inspectors. The audit report suggested that cases of same nature be scrutinized and action be taken under intimation to audit.
According to building bye-laws, commercial buildings with a height of 40 feet maximum (one plus two) are allowed within the jurisdiction of the Municipal Corporation, but dozens of commercial buildings are constructed in recent past having a height of 50 feet which is a violation of the building bye-laws but MCR officers are unable to see these high rise buildings.
Time to time, the citizens also highlight these violations in written form but the MCR officials put their applications under the table. Sources said, the former Town Nazim Chaudhary Farooq filed a complaint regarding the illegal construction made in the jurisdiction of the MCR along with the photos and location of more than one hundred illegal buildings, but the MCR officials did not take any action on the complaints.
Similarly, another citizen namely Sana-Ur-Raheem has also approached the Anti-Corruption Department to take action against the MCR officials for backing the illegal construction in the city.
In his application, Sana-ur-Rahman claimed that 90 percent of commercial buildings are constructed either without the approval of concern authorities or made violations in their constructions.
He alleged that all these constructions are made under the supervision of building inspectors and Municipal Officer Planning (MOP).
Despite repeated attempts, the MOP Abdul Salam could not be reached for the comments.