The federal government has decided to permanently shut down Islamabad’s premium dining location Monal Restaurant located on the Margalla Hills National Park due to environmental laws that prohibit construction and doing business on the premises of national parks according to Minister for Climate Change Zartaj Gul.
In an interview with Urdu News, Zartaj Gul revealed that the Government will not only oppose construction in the national park but also demolishes the existing structure in order to restore the natural look of the site.
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She also revealed that the business was earning in millions but as per Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) agreement they are not fulfilling what they promised to preserve and for the restoration of the areas, instead Monal’s management tried to expand its business unlawfully whenever they found any opportunity.
Before the decision to shut it down, in May, Islamabad Administration sealed Monal restaurant after its administration cut down trees for area expansion.
The Climate Change Minister expressed that the Federal Government is committed to preserving 15 national parks throughout Pakistan along with a 10 Billion Tree Tsunami project in order to increase the forest percentage in Pakistan.
Gul also claimed that Billion Tree Tsunami is heavily recognized globally and in this project, the current government has planted 322.4 million trees and increased forest coverage from 4 percent to 6 percent in just 2 years.
Monal restaurant was built back in 2005 after approval from the Capital Development Authority (CDA). The CDA leased the land for 10 year period.
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The 22,000 acres land was owned by Punjab government that now constitutes the Margalla Hills National Park.
From that 22,000 acres of land 5,500 acres of the land was assigned to Pak Army and the remaining 16,500 acres remained under CDA. In the latest inquiry, it was revealed that land allotted to the army is in the middle of the Margalla Hills National Park and Monal restaurant has been built on it.