iconimg Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sanjeev Bhalla, Hindustan Times
Jalandhar , July 26, 2013
Two years after a report by then ADC indicted two revenue department officials and two others for defrauding a Canada-based NRI, Gurmeet Kaur Mann, in a land deal, the district administration is yet to act against the accused. The ADC Gurmail Singh had recommended action against revenue department officials under Section 47-A of Indian Stamp Act in his report submitted on July 1, 2011 (Copy of the report is with HT).Sukhjinder Singh, a resident of Phagwara and power-of-attorney holder of the NRI, said that grabbers encroached nearly 19-kanal and 12.5 marlas of the land belonging to the family of NRI by conniving with the revenue department officials.

Sukhjinder Singh alleged that the NRI, through their relative Paramjeet Singh, a resident of Khera village, had given special power-of-attorney to Ramesh Arora and Amritpal, both residents of Jalandhar for 16 kanals in Chachoki village in Phagwara.

However, both of them connived with Phagwara tehsildar Harminder Singh and Patwari Saudagar Singh, Chaman Lal deed writer and registration Clerk Sarabjeet Kumar to execute a sale deed of 19 kanals and 12.5 marlas in Chachoki and Dhak Chachoki villages.

"All sale deeds were illegal, unlawful, null, void and executed and registered by the revenue officials fraudulently with ulterior motive of cheating, even though the revenue records were different," he alleged.

"Revenue officials at Phagwara tehsil were not even competent to register the lands belonging to NRIs. Improvement Trust authorities have also paid the amount of Rs. 1,84,75,800 to property owners on which name the land was executed and registered by revenue officials," he claimed.

The inquiry report submitted by the ADC observed that mutations of these lands were executed on the very next day for both of these transactions whereas a common man had to wait for a long time to get these.

"The patwari later submitted that it was done because the land was belonged to NRI. However, then the right to register the mutation was vested only with the district revenue officer, which was not done, as per government instructions. It was a clear case of wilful misdeed," the report reads.

"The registry of land was also done at the rates lower than that specified in the sale-agreement. In an agreement signed for 9 kanal, the deal was struck at Rs. 54 lakh, of which Rs. 29.2 lakh were paid through a cheque (number 037587 dated August 15, 2007, ICICI Bank Limited), which bounced due to insufficient funds in accounts. It also declares sale agreement null and void, but still revenue officials manage to provide benefits to their men," Sukhjinder added.

"I have procured the inquiry report of the ADC under RTI and have also approached the Kapurthala police. However, nothing has been done."

Kapurthala deputy commissioner Daljit Singh Mangat said, "The matter was brought to my notice on Thursday. I have asked ADC GS Khaira to check the records and report with the file. I will comment after I see the file."