Friday, Sep 19, 2014

Lokayukta to probe officials who wrote off lucrative govt land near airport

Express News Service | Bangalore | Posted: August 4, 2014 8:02 pm | Updated: August 4, 2014 8:18 pm

Four tahsildars who served in Devanahalli on the outskirts of Bangalore from the year 2007 have been booked by the Karnataka Lok Ayukta police for facilitating the grabbing of government land in the region where land prices have been sky rocketing since a new Bangalore International Airport was opened there in 2007.

The Lokayukta police have registered a criminal case against Sampath Kumar, Mariyappa Gowda, Asha Parveen and LC Nagaraj all of whom had served as the administrative heads of the Devanahalli taluk. The Lokayukta police in their complaint have said that all four government officials failed to protect government land in Rayasandra, Vishwanathapura, Hosahalli, Chikkanahalli, Hegganahalli, Koramangala and Beerasandra villages located next to the Kempegowda International Airport where land costs several crores per acre.

“We learned of the land scam in Devanahalli taluk and wrote about it to the Deputy Commissioner of the Bangalore Rural district. We were told that there were allegations and an internal enquiry was on. We decided to register a case ourselves and investigate the matter,” the Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) for Lokayukta H N Sathyanarayana Rao said.

“We will need several months to verify all the documents and identify how much government land was illegally transferred to private parties,” he said.

Lokayukta police sources said that government land was grabbed by the several persons by tampering with land records including tenancy rights and crop documents (RTC) and land mutation records. The tampering with land records could not have occurred without the active knowledge of the tahsildars, the sources said. A preliminary investigation has revealed that the tahsildars misused their powers and cheated the state government by writing off government land to private persons, Lok Ayukta sources said.

Investigations would reval the extent of land grabbed and the private parties who benefitted, the sources said.

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