Press Release

Slur Campaign

Bahria Town undeterred and unfazed by slur campaign

Monday, April 01, 2024

Bahria Town undeterred and unfazed by slur campaign

In a scathing rebuttal, BTPL debunks Dawn’s report as the one-sided portrayal of selective half-truths and many outright lies; Dawn’s report also targets state institutions including the Supreme Court

Numerous conjectural, spurious, and unsubstantiated allegations have been leveled against Bahria Town Private (Limited) “BTPL” in an article in Dawn News dated 25th March 2024. The said article, which portrays itself as investigative journalism appears to be a one-sided portrayal of selective half-truths and many outright lies.
The author, rather than investigating the facts, impartially and neutrally as journalistic ethics requires, instead proceed with a preconceived determination concerning the alleged ‘corruption and misfeasance’ by not just BTPL but also by state institutions, including, the Supreme Court of Pakistan itself, and then seeks to supplement its conspiracy theories with a misrepresentation of facts and regurgitation of conjectural opinions, presenting matters still sub-judice and yet to be finally determined.
BTPL has been a pioneer in the development of state-of-the-art housing societies in Pakistan and has led this market, which naturally puts a target on its back. BTPL has employed thousands of employees since its inception, supported numerous allied industries, contributed billions to the national exchequer, attracted overseas investments in real estate in Pakistan, built up public infrastructure at its own cost throughout Pakistan, and fulfilled the dream of its hundreds of thousands of residents of living in a peaceful, serene, and housing scheme of international standard.
BTPL’s Karachi Project is a marvel, with standards of facilities not available anywhere else in Pakistan. The sheer scale, logistics, and quality of this world-class project are beyond anything experienced by Pakistan. Launched in 2014, it has already become a “city within a city” which is a living community with thousands of residents, enjoying an enviable lifestyle not available anywhere else in Pakistan. Designed with a neighborhood concept to provide outstanding facilities to its residents, it has introduced new benchmarks of community development. The attention to detail ensures that all imaginable amenities and services are available which were unimaginable in Pakistan.
The sheer scale of success of BTPL, and the number of investors in Bahria Town Karachi itself is a testament to the fact that BTPL has consistently delivered the dreams that it promised. Despite the campaign of vilification, harassment, and undue pressure exerted on BTPL, including, through such defamatory articles, BTPL is not a mirage that will fade away but a reality that is rooted in successful delivery to the satisfaction of its investors. BTPL’s sponsors stand firm and reassure its investors that their bread and butter is Pakistan, and they will continue to strive to play a positive role in the development of Pakistan.
While BTPL does not intend to respond to every salacious assertion made in the Article, it is apparent from the motives imputed to the Supreme Court about secrecy, that the author lacks a basic understanding of the procedures of not just the Supreme Court but of all High Courts as well where certified copies are not provided for any of the annexures but only the pleadings, as the Courts cannot certify the authenticity of a document submitted as an annexure by a party.
Had the author truly read the orders and judgments of the Supreme Court passed in respect of the matter, and the pleadings of the parties before the Court, she would have become aware of what points the BTPL had raised in its case before the Court and how it continues to plead them.

Like be treated alike

BTPL seeks relief against discrimination; and demands to be treated on par with DHA and other societies by Article 25 of the Constitution

The BTPL should not be discriminated against and targeted based on a grossly exorbitant offer elicited under the threat of NAB inquiry. The order dated 4th May 2018 of the Supreme Court itself records that “… government land has also been allotted to DHA and many other societies on cheaper rates as compared to the rates in this case. If so, we would request the Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan to take Suo Motu action on this behalf so that likes be treated alike.”
Understandably, in any real estate project, one of the most important factors is the price of the land where such a project is developed and its comparison/compatibility to the price of adjoining/similarly located projects. BTPL through CMA Nos. 8884 of 2023 and 9439 of 2023 placed on record verifiable documentation showing that another similarly placed housing project i.e., DHA has been allotted about 19,640 acres of land in Deh Kathore and the adjacent Dehs of Bayal, Abdar, and Khadeji for a consideration of Rs. 100,000 per acre, aggregating to total consideration of Rs. 1.96 Billion (approx.) for 19,640 acres, at a rate of Rs. 100,000 per acre, while the rate being imposed on BTPL comes to Rs. 27,225,378 per acre. This amounts to a staggering difference of over Rs. 458 Billion between similarly placed land in similar areas of MDA for similar purposes. Accordingly, BTPL demands treatment that is meted out to DHA, per the fundamental right guaranteed under Article 25 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973.

Reliance on survey report misplaced

BTPL contends it cannot be made to unilaterally fulfill obligations regarding the purchase of land while MDA admits it’s not in a position to fulfill its reciprocal obligations; laments Bahria Town not allowed to rebut survey

The BTPL contended that the Supreme Court order of 21 March 2019 placed reciprocal obligations on BTPL and MDA i.e., (i) BTPL to make payment of an aggregate amount of Rs. 460 Billion, being considered for leasehold rights in the Land measuring 16,896 acres; and (ii) the concerned Government Authorities to provide unencumbered/accessible possession of the specified 16,896 acres in its entirety for development and sale thereof. BTPL contended that it cannot be made to unilaterally fulfill obligations, in respect of the purchase of land, when as per the admitted position of MDA, MDA was/is not in a position to fulfill its reciprocal obligations and has provided land to the tune of 11,747 acres only, affecting the overall viability of the project.
The reliance on the survey report submitted in the Supreme Court on 23 November 2023 is misplaced as it did not undertake any survey of the available land for development within the 16,896 acres and instead only relied upon the map of the “outer boundary” of such land, appended with the 2019 Order, to claim that the BTPL has the entire area of such land. No opportunity to rebut such a survey report was ever provided to BTPL.

A bona fide act portrayed as an offence

Supreme Court order pertained solely to 16,896 acres of state land; it didn’t prevent BTPL from procuring private land to compensate allottees who couldn’t be accommodated in state land

The claim that BTPL has landed more than what was permitted by the Supreme Court i.e. 16,896 acres is completely misconceived. It is clarified that the orders passed by the Supreme Court were solely in respect of 16,896 acres of land which formed part of the state land consolidated/exchanged with MDA and formed the subject matter of those proceedings. This did not preclude BTPL in any way from procuring additional private land. All land held by BTPL more than such land is privately procured and does not violate the orders of the Supreme Court in any manner. One of the main purposes of procuring such additional land was to compensate and provide land to allottees who could not be given land in 16,896 acres on account of non-provision of complete land to BTPL. Yet such a bona fide act of BTPL is being portrayed as an “offense” committed by BTPL.

It’s not about landscape alone, it’s about changing lives also

As a leading real estate developer, BTPL along with its sponsors have been accused of corruption several times in the past. Yet, like other cases involving BTPL, these corruption allegations have never been confirmed in any Court of Law. Despite such persecution, BTPL has and continues to initiate numerous charity initiatives and has made substantial donations to organizations providing essential needs such as food, housing, healthcare, and education to people in need. BTPL is not in the business of changing mere landscapes. It is in the business of changing lives. BTPL has complete and utter confidence in the legal system of Pakistan and will continue to fight its battles in the Courts.

 From the Newspapers

 From the Gallery