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Wednesday 17 July, 2024
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ECP announces bans on issuance of NOC for new housing societies

BY Shahzad Saeed Aug 19, 2023. 06:07 am UPDATED: Aug 19, 2023. 06:07 am

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The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has announced a ban on issuing No Objection Certificates (NOCs) for new housing societies in an effort to stop haphazard urban expansion and preserve priceless green spaces and agricultural land. Due to this decision, any urgent matters that had previously been approved by deputy commissioners now need the commission’s consent.

The ECP’s action is in response to the alarming rise in land usage changes that the provincial governments have started in various districts. Numerous housing societies have encroached on vital green spaces and productive agricultural land as a result of the unchecked approval of NOCs for multiple housing societies. Experts caution that if this trend continues, it could lead to an unplanned and chaotic urban sprawl that could encourage corruption hotspots in particular areas.

The ECP’s notification also emphasizes how crucial it is to not rely on the caretaker government when making policy decisions, even in times of operational urgency. The ECP emphasizes that while routine crises can be handled by the caretaker administration, important policy decisions must be tabled pending input from the elected administration.

The Election Commission has issued an order to stop issuing new NOCs right away, with a clear directive to inform all deputy commissioners of this decision. Exceptional situations that call for immediate action will be assessed, but only following a careful examination and commission approval process.

The caretaker administration is required to uphold the commission’s rules and regulations and to provide a convincing justification for any exceptional measures they deem necessary due to land use issues or other issues. With this measure, Pakistan’s natural resources will be protected for upcoming generations while also allowing for responsible land development.

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