With an aim to uncover the 'benami' land sale deeds, executed during the regime of the previous Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government, detected two fresh cases of illegal land sale on Friday, executed on the pretext of a fake agriculturist certificate in this district.
Meanwhile, the police also registered a case on charges of cheating, criminal conspiracy and Prevention of Corruption Act against the then naib tehsildar and patwari of Amb tehsil in Una, and one Seema Luthra of Delhi in whose name fake agriculturists certificate was issued in 2012.
Earlier, the SIT had uncovered over dozen cases of land sale deeds, executed in Sirmour and Solan during the previous Dhumal government, on the basis of fake agriculturist certificates in violation of Section118 of the Himachal Pradesh Land Reforms and Tenancy Act, 1972.
Superintendent of police Ramesh Chhajta, along with deputy SP and SIT head Shewta Thakur said that in the first case detected by the investigating officer, Sanjeev Kumar, a resident of Atari village of Anandpur Sahib in Punjab, had purchased a total of 28.12 bighas of agriculture land in Mollon village of Shamti area through various sale deeds in 2012.
After the villagers filed a complaint, it was found that Kumar was neither a tax-payer nor had a healthy financial background to purchase the big chunk of land in the state. Initially, some of sale deeds were executed on the basis of general power of attorney in violation of the law but later it was discovered that the entire land was purchased by one Rajender Singh of Bajeerpur village of Mohali district in Punjab, in the name of Kumar.
Chhajta said that in the second case, one Seema Luthra of Delhi obtained an agriculturist's certificate in connivance with the naib tehsildar and patwrai of Amb tehsil in 2012.
The SIT found that Luthra had purchased 6.13 bighas of agriculture land at Siharadi Muslmana village of Dharampur area on the basis of fake agriculturist certificate, in which she was shown as resident of Kuthra Jaswala village of Amb tehsil.
Earlier, Luthra had filed a case before the court challenging the mutation for claiming her legal rights on the land of one Surjeet Singh at the village in 1987. After a court order, the revenue officials transferred 0.0052 hectare of the land in her name in 2011, but subsequently made the entries in the records that there was no evidence concerning her permanent Himachal agriculturist record or domicile.
This lead to suspicion by SIT members, who, after investigations, found that Luthra was neither a resident of Himachal nor an agriculturist. Later, Luthra constructed a palatial bungalow on the land in question at the village.
Chhajta said that since the investigations had established the violation of the law, a case has been registered and sent to district magistrate to proceed further under Section 118 against her.