Friday, November 1, 2013

Congress seeks Punjab chief justice's intervention on land grab

Chandigarh ǀ IANS ǀ 27 October 2013

The Congress Sunday urged the Punjab and Haryana High Court's chief justice to take cognizance of "blatant and politically backed" land grab by powerful people in Punjab by way of encroachment of village common land.

Punjab Congress spokesman Sukhpal Singh Khaira alleged that a powerful nexus of politician-bureaucrat-police officers has encroached upon panchayat, shamlat and village common land all over the state.

He alleged that the encroachers included powerful people like former minister and ex-Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Jagir Kaur, who is a legislator of the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal, and the state Director General of Police (DGP) Sumedh Singh Saini.

"Jagir Kaur has illegitimately encroached upon 12 acres prime commercial land in Begowal (Kapurthala) worth Rs.100 crore. There has been no action against her despite a complaint pending with the Lok Pal since August 2011," Khaira said in a statement here.

"Similarly, Saini has, through his influence, been able to get 32 kanals of 'Gair-Mumkin Nadi' (rivulet) mutated in his favour in village Kansal near Chandigarh, but no action has been taken against him."

Khaira said that the Justice Kuldip Singh commission, appointed by the high court to look into land grabbing by powerful people in Chandigarh's periphery, had submitted its interim report, accusing powerful people of land-grabbing but the state government was unwilling to take any action.

Khaira urged the chief justice to take suo moto cognizance of the matter.

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