Peshawar: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister (CM) Mahmood Khan on Wednesday (October 26) imposed a ban on all types of new construction alongside rivers, irrigation canals and other waterways in the province, news sources reported.
CM Mehmood, who presided over a meeting on the province’s anti-encroachment drive, directed the relevant authorities to enforce Section 144 against the construction of new houses, hotels, and all other commercial and non-commercial infrastructure alongside waterways such as the Swat, Panjkora, and Kunhar rivers, as well as irrigation department canals throughout the province. He asked the relevant authorities to carry out their duties without being pressured and to ensure that laws are enforced.
Moreover, Mehmood also directed all stakeholders not to issue any No-Objection Certificates (NOC) for any construction along rovers. It was revealed during the meeting that 100 unlawful structures along the Swat River had been dismantled in five separate operations in Kalam, Madyan, Bahrain, Fiza Ghat, and Mingora. In addition, hotels and boundary walls that had been built in Kalam Bazar have been removed.
It is vital to remember that, under KP legislation, it is illegal to erect any home or construction within 200 metres of a body of water. However, the violation of this rule has resulted in property damage which is estimated to be worth billions.