Raids on 13 property dealers, serving & retd officials in Jammu; 4 arrested

Revenue record recovered from the houses of retired and serving officials and property dealers in Jammu on Sunday.
Revenue record recovered from the houses of retired and serving officials and property dealers in Jammu on Sunday.

Cash, documents seized; more arrests likely

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Feb 20: In a first of its kind action, Jammu Police and Revenue authorities today jointly carried out raids at 21 locations of 13 property dealers and serving and retired officials of the Revenue Department and arrested four persons besides effecting recovery of cash around Rs 26 lakh and large number of official documents which can’t be kept at houses by the officials.

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Four persons, who were arrested this evening after their involvement was established in facilitating land encroachments and illegal sale and purchase of land, have been identified as Sadeeq Poswal, a property dealer of Channi Himmat, Mohammad Bashir, retired Tehsildar R/o Janipura, Dharampal, retired Girdawar from Sarore and Ghulam Rasool, retired Girdawar hailing from Sunjwan.
SSP Jammu Chandan Kohli, who led the searching teams, told the Excelsior: “We are doing investigations in a very fair and transparent manner. As and when more leads come in the investigations, more such raids, recoveries and arrests can be made”.
Besides four arrested persons, others whose premises were today raided include Ravinder Gupta alias Gola Shah of Greater Kailash Tola Sarpanch, Mohammad Sadeeq and Yasmeen Choudhary, all residents of Chowadi, Farman Ali of Sunjwan, Shabir Ahmad, serving Naib Tehsildar of Rajouri and a resident of Gujjar Nagar, Mohammad Iqbal Zargar, serving Naib Tehsildar from Doda and a resident of Bagh-e-Bahu and Mohammad Rashid, serving Patwari of Poonch, who hails from Sidhra.
The raids were based on case FIR No. 182 of 2021 registered at Channi Himmat Police Station on the basis of a complaint lodged by Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) South about missing of land record.
Investigations showed involvement of a number of property dealers and serving and retired Revenue Department officials and accordingly raids were planned jointly by Jammu Police and Revenue Department authorities.
“A large quantity of Revenue record was recovered during the raids which can’t be kept by serving of retired officers/officials in their houses,” sources said, adding unaccounted cash to the tune of Rs 26.63 lakh was also seized.
Documents pertaining to land deals and bank locker keys have also been recovered.
The investigating agencies are also looking into the aspects of money laundering, disproportionate assets, invoking of provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act and PMLA etc.
Many persons, whose premises were raided today, have already been facing various FIRs against them in the past under different Sections.
Sources said the searches were held as per the laid down procedures consisting of 21 separate teams and comprising Executive Magistrates, Police officers and other officials including women constables and independent witnesses. The areas were segregated into sectors, each being supervised by SP/ Dy. SP Rank gazetted Police Officers. The whole process was closely supervised by senior officers of Police and Revenue administration, maintaining full confidentiality.
It is pertinent to mention here that the seized documents include original Jamabandis, Roznamcha Registers, Lathas, Mussavis and trace maps especially of revenue villages Sunjwan and Chowadhi. Scrutiny of the seized documents is going on minutely and further arrests are likely, the said.
“The Government is committed in its resolve to eradicate any kind of corruption from the Revenue Department. Simultaneously, the revenue functioning is also being made more transparent and accountable with various people friendly initiatives like issuance of land passbooks in three languages, Aapki Zameen Aapki Nigraani Program, SVAMITVA Scheme for rural abadi deh lands survey, digitization of Jamabandies/ Girdawari Registers/ RoR and issuance of online fards in a phased manner and making various revenue related services online,” sources said.