Market built on school land razed
PUL-I-KHUMRI (PAN): Hundreds of people on Wednesday staged a protest demonstration in the capital of northern Baghlan province, destroying the foundation of a commercial market being built on a piece of land which they claimed had been allotted for a school.
The protestors claimed the commercial market over a half an acre of land was a joint venture of some warlords and the Ministry of Commerce and Industries in the 2nd police district.
The protestors said the market was being built near residential homes of 2,000 families, who had no school in the area for their children.
They added many children lost their lives to traffic accidents each year while crossing the busy road to go to a school located five kilometres away.
One of the protestors, Mohammad Hassan, said his five-year-old daughter was crushed to death by a car as she tried to cross the road.
“A number of warlords have been trying to construct a business market on this land previously allocated for a school. But we will not allow this.”
Another protestor, Mohammad Hassan, said last year, the food items distribution office also attempted to construct a building on the same land, but faced a harsh reaction from locals.
An official at the Pul-i-Khumri Municipality, Eng. Raz Mohammad, said the land had temporarily been given to the food distribution office during the government of former president Dr. Najibullah in 1981.
He acknowledged the office had irresponsibly started construction of a trade market on the land without prior consultations with the municipality.
He said: “We agree with locals on building a school on this land, keeping in view their demand and requirement.” He further said the food office had ignored repeated official notices.
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