In the year 2001 the State Lands Vesting of Ownerships to Occupants Act was passed by the legislature. It came to be known as Roshni Scheme. It authorized the Government to transfer the ownership of State/nazool land to private persons under certain conditions. After some time, serious charges were brought against the functionaries alleging that many irregularities were committed in a number of cases to benefit the influential and resourceful persons although they were not eligible to hold the lands in question. It became a serious matter and even a PIL was filed and the case is still under the consideration of the High Court.
The court has ordered a probe into the allegations brought against some of the functionaries of the Revenue Department. The State Vigilance Organization was directed to conduct a probe into the alleged irregularities and violation of the Act.
The MLA from Udhampur asked a question demanding the Government reveal the names and particulars of persons who had become beneficiaries of the largesse allowed to them by certain functionaries by subverting the Act. We have taken up this issue at several times in these columns and each time we demanded that the name and particulars of the beneficiaries be revealed. The Government has been hesitant to make any satisfying revelation in this behalf. This time also the Revenue Minister came out with the patent reply that the matter was under consideration. He revealed very scant information and was hesitant in revealing the names of the beneficiaries. Our information is that some politically influential persons have become the beneficiaries of the largesse of the Revenue Department and that is the reason why the names are not disclosed. It does not show that there is transparency in the administration and that any good Government shall have to satisfy the people. The Government should complete the probe so as to take the scam to the logical conclusion.