Three lawsuits hit Saudi's Haramain Rail officials
The land acquisition committee of Saudi's transport ministry undervalued the properties demolished to build Haramain Rail, according to the lawsuit
Three lawsuits have been filed against the land acquisition committee of Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Transport.
These cases have been filed claiming properties acquired for the Haramain Rail project have been undervalued, and call for a re-evaluation of property prices.
A total of 3,500 properties in the Makkah region have been acquired for the ambitious railway project.
The Kingdom's courts have previously rejected similar cases brought in by citizens seeking compensation on the grounds that they do not possess the land's ownership deed.
According to The Saudi Gazette, a general court has issued 250 ownership documents for citizens who did not possess property deeds in order to receive compensation for buildings demolished for the project.
The administrative court in Jeddah has so far finalised 95% of cases related to compensation payment, with around 85% of verdicts issued by the court requiring the ministry to re-evaluate properties through a new committee.
The transport ministry is standing by the land acquisition committee's decision and said it included experts from relevant organisations and that the compensations given were fair.
The ministry requested the court to reject the lawsuits.
An appeals court has upheld the verdicts that called on the ministry to re-evaluate properties, saying the compensations given were unfair.
It also advised the ministry to make use of the real estate evaluation expertise of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The plaintiffs told the court that the evaluation committee had not considered the rising value of real estate when calculating compensation for their properties.