Protest as Logar authorities demolish ‘illegal’ homes
PUL-I-ALAM (Pajhwok): The authorities on Wednesday started demolishing houses which have been illegally constructed on government land in the capital of central Logar province, sparking a protest by the house owners.
Logar governor’s spokesman, Salim Saleh, told Pajhwok Afghan News some individuals had grabbed and then sold to others hundreds of acres of government land in Shirwazi area of Pul-i-Alam, the provincial capital.
“600 acres of land was usurped and sold for millions of afghanis by some individuals and land mafia”, he said.
He said land grabbers and their lawyers had been trying for the last few months to transfer the usurped land to their names through the appellant court, but were unsuccessful.
The court had found their documents as fake, he said, adding the process to demolish illegal houses on the land was started on Wednesday in compliance with a presidential decree and the court decision.
Saleh said the recovered land would be used for construction of governmental offices because 50 percent of public offices in Logar didn’t have their own buildings.
Dozens of people protesting against the demolition of houses gathered in front of the provincial council office.
A representative of the protestors, Irfanullah, said the houses shouldn’t be destroyed because people had purchased the land.
“I purchased one acre of land for 200,000 afghanis. I have documents as well, but the government is destroying our homes. I would never let anyone destroy my home even if I get killed.”
Another protestor Haji Yahyaa said “we have not usurped the land, but have purchased it and we also have traditional purchase documents.”
He said they arrived in front of the provincial council to prevent the demolition plan from being implemented and to convey their voice to government leaders. “Even if it demands our blood, we wouldn’t let anyone destroy our houses.”
Logar provincial council member, Mohibullah Saleh, told the protestors that he would share the issue with local authorities.
Muhibullah told Pajhwok Afghan News that they had shared the issue with local administration and the National Directorate of Security. He said Governor Mohammad Halim Fidai had promised to find a solution to the problem.
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