Govt contemplating to frame multi-deptt committee to thrash out anomalies

*Rectifications needed to take SVO cases to logical end

Mohinder Verma
JAMMU, Apr 19: With serious contradictions in Roshni Scheme Rules and Land Revenue Laws as well as previous Government orders coming to the fore, the Government is contemplating to frame a multi-department committee to thrash out the anomalies so as to pave the way for taking all the cases registered by the State Vigilance Organization (SVO) to the logical conclusion.
Reliable sources in General Administration Department told EXCELSIOR that the State Vigilance Organization, on the basis of report of Principal Auditor General, has registered 16 cases vis-à-vis violation and misuse of Jammu and Kashmir State Land (Vesting of Ownership Rights to Occupants) Act, 2001 popularly known as Roshni Scheme.
Out of these cases, 11 are under investigation, two cases have been sent for prosecution sanction, one case is under stay by the orders of High Court and one case is pending for production of challan. Similarly, one case is sub-judice before Special Judge Anti-Corruption Court.
Stating that during investigation of these cases certain anomalies were observed, sources informed that vide Circular No.FC/LS/Misc/ 1648/97 dated December 22, 1997 issued by the then Financial Commissioner Revenue all the Patwaries were barred from making any entry regarding illegal possession over the State land or to change any previous entry in this behalf.
Subsequently, in the year 2001 the J&K State Land (Vesting of Ownership Rights to Occupants) Act and Rules came into force. In Section 5 of this Act, the extract of Khasra Girdawari was made mandatory to be taken into consideration while vesting the ownership rights to the occupant of the State land, sources informed.
“If there was specific bar for making any revenue entries in the Khasra Girdawari regarding occupation of the State land then how the extract of the Khasra Girdawari has been made as pre-requisite condition for vesting the ownership rights over the State land to the occupants”, sources pointed out while dubbing this as a major anomaly.
“This major anomaly is required to be clarified so that cases under investigation pertaining to Roshni Scam can be taken to logical conclusion”, they said.
Moreover, determination of price of land under Roshni Act has not been supported by the location wise prices in order to avoid any ambiguity during the fixation of the price by the price fixation committee, sources further disclosed, adding “even it has not been sufficiently cleared in the J&K State Land (Vesting of Ownership Rights to Occupants) Act, 2001 that whether the law would be applicable to Forest Land and Gair Mumkin Khad etc.
Keeping all these anomalies in mind, the Government is contemplating to constitute multi-department committee with Legal and Revenue Laws experts as its members, sources said while disclosing that General Administration Department will shortly issue an order in this regard as much-hue and cry is already being raised over inordinate delay in taking the SVO cases to the logical conclusion.
“These anomalies are required to be removed otherwise SVO cases are not going to withstand judicial determination and that would be a major set-back to the ongoing investigation in the Roshni Scam”, sources stressed.
They further said, “it is to be seen whether the Government shows interest in taking the SVO cases in Roshni Scam to the logical conclusion by timely thrashing out the issues or prefer to maintain silence over the entire issue”, adding “the General Administration Department has also brought these anomalies to the notice of Chief Secretary B R Sharma for final decision over constitution of multi-department committee”.


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