ISLAMABAD: The National Police Academy (NPA) Islamabad is trying to get an additional piece of land originally earmarked for a 500-bed hospital. The Capital Development Authority (CDA) had earlier allotted 31 acres of land in Sector H-11/1 in Islamabad for the police academy. However, police officials are trying to get 26 acres more land situated opposite to their existing site. However, sources inside the civic body said that the piece of land, measuring 26 acres, had already been earmarked for the construction of a hospital. The hospital will be constructed under the Prime Minister’s Health Programme. The government plans to set up 46 hospitals across-the-country. They will be fully funded by the federal government and will have all the latest healthcare facilities. Sources inside the civic body said that CDA had already refused the request for the allotment of additional land to the police academy. “However, their higher ups are trying again and again to get the land,” the sources said. “In the past, the academy was allowed to use the piece of land in question on temporary basis without any entitlement. However, they want its formal allotment,” an official source said. When contacted, Urban Planning Director Ijaz Ahemd Shaikh confirmed that the Islamabad Police had made a request in this regard. “We have made our input and forwarded the case as per rules, but the final decision in this regard is yet to be made by the Member Planning and Design in consultation with the CDA chairman,” he said. “The land in front of the National Police Academy was a green area in the master plan. So that is why it was being used by police for activities such as horse riding. However, it was later converted by federal government for use as institutional purposes,” the director said. Member Planning and Design Asad Mehbob Kiani said: “We are very careful in the allotment of land, even to government institutions. We keep in mind the scarcity of land available for the purpose in capital.” “I think enough land has already been allotted to the National Police Academy. If they want to expend their structure, then they should go vertical. We will allow them to construct additional floors,” he said.Requesting anonymity, another official said: “Government departments have made it a routine to use land that is not originally allotted to them. On the other hand, land worth billions of rupees belonging to these same departments has not be utilised.” “We need to discourage such practices as the state land is not meant for free distribution. It should be allotted according to needs,” he said. The NPA commandant was contacted several times by Daily Times, but he remained unavailable for comments. Published in Daily Times, August 26th 2017.