Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Periphery encroachments: HC expands probe scope
Express news service
Posted: May 25, 2012 at 0220 hrs IST
Chandigarh Expanding the scope of investigation of the case on illegal properties owned by high-ups, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today decided to include other cases pertaining to grabbing and encroachment on shamlat/ common land in other areas of Punjab. The development took place during the resumed hearing today of a PIL on properties owned by high-ups in the UT periphery. Today’s hearing was to decide the terms of reference of the investigation to be handed over to a Judicial Tribunal. The High Court observed that other cases can be clubbed together with this petition.
Senior lawyer M L Sarin had pointed out to the Bench on Wednesday that he was appointed an amicus curiae in a case pertaining shamlat/ common land grabbed by highs-up in Mohali and related areas. The Bench today observed that the cases, five in number, can be heard together to be decided whether they (case) should also go to the Judicial Tribunal to be headed by Justice (Retd) Kuldeep Singh of the Supreme Court.
The cases will now come up for hearing on May 28. On Wednesday the High Court had raised eyebrows over the change in entries of land from public to private, owned by 60 high-ups in the periphery of Chandigarh,. The High Court had questioned the “clean chit” given by the Punjab government to its “elite group” of 60 high-ups.
Rejecting the stout opposition of the Punjab government to handing over of the probe of the case to a judicial tribunal, the High Court had observed on Wednesday, “How do we expect that those who are to decide will decide against themselves?”
Refusing to believe that the investigation has been done by Punjab in a transparent manner, the Bench had made it clear that the probe would be conducted by a judicial tribunal headed by Justice (Retd) Kuldeep Singh, who will be assisted by a District and Sessions Judge (DSJ).
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