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Posted On: 4 April 2010 04:26 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:10 pm

Officials find 20 illegal farm houses

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Civic authorities have identified 20 illegal farm houses and more than 700 portacabins and 1,400 car sheds across the country for action. The maximum number of the illegal structures has been identified in Al Rayan and the least within the city limits of Doha. In Doha, so far, only a dozen illegal car sheds, two tents and 65 portacabins have been earmarked, while the numbers for Al Rayan are 457 portacabins and 468 car sheds. These facilities exist on public property in violation of a key 1985 law which provides for stringent action against encroachment on state property. Municipalities in the country swung into action after an April 1 deadline to remove illegal structures ended. Identified earlier, violators had been served notices by the municipalities in their respective areas to remove the structures by April 1. Civic inspectors are doing the rounds in their respective areas after the deadline lapsed and have so far identified several illegal car sheds and portacabins. The owners have been asked to remove these structures. A former member of the Central Municipal Council (CMC), Ahmed Al Sheeb, told this newspaper that the municipalities had been considerate towards the families which have no or little space to accommodate domestic workers such as maids, cooks and drivers. “Some families live in small villas, so they install portacabins to house domestic staff. They have been given due consideration by the various municipalities,” Al Sheeb said. According to him, a civic official accompanies every municipal inspector who visits a locality to identify illegal portacabins and car sheds. The job of the official is to find out if a family has built an illegal structure on public property deliberately or pressed by a need. “These officials interview family members and decide if a portacabin is to be removed or not,” said Al Sheeb. The municipalities have, meanwhile, given final ultimatum to violators saying that if they do not remove the structures the matter would be taken up with the police.