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HindustanTimes Fri,24 Oct 2014

Odisha to probe temple land encroachment

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Bhubaneswar, November 06, 2012
First Published: 23:52 IST(6/11/2012) | Last Updated: 03:03 IST(7/11/2012)

The Odisha government has ordered a probe into alleged encroachment of land worth R50,000 crore belonging to different temples including the Jagannath Temple in Puri and Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar.

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The order came on Monday, more than a month after 19 MLAs cut across party lines and jointly wrote to CM Naveen Patnaik for action against the encroachers. The government has asked revenue divisional commissioners and district collectors for detailed reports to facilitate “necessary action”.

According to the MLAs, vested interest groups and mafia are selling encroached land of temples and the endowment department across the state to innocent people, resulting in numerous court cases.

At prevailing rates, the value of the encroached land would be R50,000 crore, the MLAs said in their September 28 letter, signed among others by ruling Biju Janata Dal’s Amar Prasad Satpathy, BJP’s KV Singh Deo.

Probe into land allotment begins

The West Bengal government has started a probe into alleged irregularities in allotting land in Kolkata for a proposed residential complex. “It is an old inquiry that is continuing,” said Vineet Goel, deputy inspector general, Criminal Investigation Department (CID). The project is a joint venture of the government of West Bengal and a consortium of developers. The government has asked the CID to find out whether officials and CPI(M) leaders had favoured the developers during the former Left Front regime when 65 acres was given to the promoters.

However an Urbana representative told HT work was continuing.

- HTC, Kolkata


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