Monday, April 9, 2012

News Article: Builders to babus, lawyers to netas, All bagged village common land

RAGHAV OHRI : Chandigarh, Sun Apr 01 2012, 01:33 hrs

Names of top builders, politicians, bureaucrats, immigration companies, lawyers and other high-ups figure in the list of beneficiaries who were sold village common land in Mohali. Large pieces of shamlat deh and jumla mushtarka malkan falling in as many as 31 villages in Mohali have been sold in contravention of rules.

Shockingly, contrary to the rules, ownership rights of the common land too have been transferred. This information was given to the Punjab and Haryana High Court by the Punjab government on Friday. Village common land in 23 villages in Dera Bassi and eight villages in Kharar have been sold off to the high-ups, reveals the list.

To top it all, co-sharers of village common land have sold off the land further to private builders. Newsline was the first to report on March 30 that as many as 858 sale deeds pertaining to shamlat deh and jumla mushtarka malkan in Mohali stand registered till now.

The information was furnished pursuant to High Court directions on a petition alleging sale of shamlat deh land with the active connivance of the revenue authorities. The High Court, on the last date of hearing in February, had held, “We are sanguine in our belief that a fraud has been perpetuated on the rights of the gram panchayat and the proprietary body by sale of jumla mushtarka malkan land, ownership whereof vests in proprietors and management and control vests in a gram panchayat. It is surprising and indeed shocking that the deputy commissioner and the tehsildar have allowed registration of sale deed of land in jumla mushtarka malkan. The deputy commissioner, SAS Nagar, Mohali has been sleeping over the matter.”

The High Court had then sought a list of the sale deeds executed in Mohali so far. The same was furnished in the High Court on Friday. It is pertinent to mention here that during the hearing of the petition, the Punjab government had admitted that ownership of jumla mushtarka malkan land lies with the village proprietary body.

Shares of individual land owners are not specified in the jamabandi because it does not vest in any individual landowner. For the same reason, individual land owners are not competent to sell any portion of the jumla mushtarka malkan land; correct or incorrect calculation of shares of khewatdars is of no significance,” the Punjab government submitted in its reply.

Sale deeds executed in favour of private respondents are null and void as no one can be allowed to sell land described as jumla mushtarka malkan, the HC had observed after perusing the reply of the Punjab government. The High Court had on Friday directed the Mohali deputy commissioner (DC), senior superintendent of police (SSP), and chief conservator of forests to come up with a plan to protect the village common land and land in the periphery of Mohali from illegal occupation.

Some villages where sales have been made
The villages in Dera Bassi where sales have been made are Bhabat, Bahori, Bair Majra, Janetpur, Devi Nagar, Dayalpura, Sundhran, Amlala, Haibatpur, Baroli, Chadiala, Gazipur, Bhagwasi, Chhatt, Khellan, Gujran, Stabgarh, Nagla, Rauni, Bahora, Bair Majra, Mubarikpur and Madhopur. The eight villages in Kharar where village common land has been sold in alleged connivance with revenue authorities are Mullanpur Garibdas, Parch, Nada, Lubhangarh, Chandpur, Bajeedpur, Khizrabad and Baliali.

© 2012 The Indian Express Limited. All rights reserved

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