Opposing sides disrupt public hearing on Bhara Kahu project.

ISLAMABAD -- Amid rumpus, the Pakistan Environment Protection Agency (Pak-EPA) conducted a public hearing on the environment impact assessment (EIA) report prepared by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) on Bhara Kahu bypass project at Jinnah Convention Centre.

During the hearing, Quaid-i-Azam University's (QAU) faculty and students as well as locals of Bhara Kahu and Murree exchanged harsh words due to which the proceeding was disrupted several times. Both sides also raised slogans against each other.

The QAU faculty members, including Pervez Hoodbhoy, opposed the project.

He said QAU land belonged to the future generation and 'we will not allow the CDA to execute this project'.

QAU faculty, students and residents of Bhara Kahu, Murree raise slogans; police intervene to avoid untoward situation

In response, CDA's director Rana Tariq said the project was launched for the public at large and against the university land falling under the project the CDA had issued an offer letter to provide alternative land to the university.

Dr Hoodbhoy said this land was not meant for land mafia and that laboratories and sports grounds would be set up there in future.

Other speakers from both sides also spoke on the occasion. However, all of a sudden they started raising slogans against each other.

The QAU students chanted: 'Down with land mafia' while the locals said the project was meant for millions of people.

They said the project was started without getting approval from the Pakistan Environment Protection Agency (Pak-EPA).

The situation got tense and to avoid any untoward situation police had to intervene.

The venue was then shifted to the main convention centre from the conference hall where both sides - QAU faculty and students and locals - were asked to sit separately and record their concerns.

Local representatives Sufyan Abbasi and Sajadul Hasan from Murree and Raja Wahid from Bhara Kahu said the bypass project was imperative as millions...

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