Monday Jan 17, 2022
ISLAMABAD: A grand operation against illegal structures that are creating road closures in Murree started Monday on the recommendation of a five-member probe body investigating the tragedy in Murree last week which claimed the lives of more than 23 people at the hill station amid a powerful snowstorm.
The operation, according to municipal officer Raza Elahi, will target unlawful commercial complexes, hotels, and apartments without parking spaces.
The municipal officer stated that the process of sealing and demolition of structures on Bansara Gali, Bhurban Road has started.
Raza Elahi, who is in charge of the anti-encroachment operation, told Geo News that a five-member investigating commission had suggested that encroachments and unlawful constructions be demolished in Murree, declaring illegal structures and encroachments on the Murree Expressway and connecting highways a “major obstacle” to the flow of traffic.
The committee, set up by the Punjab government, is investigating the causes and lapses that led to the deaths of 23 visitors in Murree during a snowstorm on January 8.
The committee had recommended demolishing all illegal hotels, plazas, and building sites at the hill station.
At least 23 people had died as thousands of tourist vehicles ended up being stranded in Murree due to heavy snowfall and ensuing road blockage last week.
The Punjab government had declared Murree a calamity-hit area after heavy snowfall wreaked havoc on the city.
According to the local administration of Murree, rain and blizzards were forecast around Murree, with thunderstorms at a speed of 50-90 kmph and heavy snowfall.
Further, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) also reprimanded the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and said it is responsible for the Murree tragedy.