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Bathinda land scam: CBI to share confidential report with ‘accused’

The CBI has finally agreed to share its confidential report of Bathinda land scam with "accused".

Written by Express News Service | Chandigrah | Published: December 12, 2013 11:40 pm

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has finally agreed to share its confidential inquiry report pertaining to a land scam in Bathinda with the “accused”. However,the CBI has made it clear that it will furnish only an “abridged” version of the report without disclosing names of suspects and witnesses in the case.

Accepting the contention,the Punjab and Haryana High Court today directed CBI to give a copy of its inquiry report to respondents in the case by January 10. As asked by the court on the last hearing,Advocate Sumeet Goel,appearing on behalf of CBI,informed that the CBI has completed its preliminary investigation and is awaiting court’s directions to proceed (register an FIR).

It was in January this year that the CBI had recommended registration of an FIR against 15 persons in a case of favouritism by the Punjab government to politically influential persons by acquiring their land (around 247 kanals) in Bathinda in 2010 at a very high price for a solid waste dumping yard. The contents of the report have till now not been made public.

The CBI had recommended registration of FIR on charges of cheating,criminal conspiracy and Prevention of Corruption Act,1988 on a PIL filed by residents of Mandi Khurd village in Bathinda district. The CBI probe was conducted following High Court’s directions in a PIL filed by residents of Mandi Khurd village in Bathinda district.

Ludhiana resident Khushdev Singh,his wife Kamaljeet Kaur and brother Himmat Singh; Muktsar residents Kanwar Pal Singh,his wife Kirandeep Kaur,Balvinder Singh,Ludhiana resident Yadvinder Singh,wife Jasdeep and relative Surjeet Kaur had purchased 247 kanals and 6 marlas on the Bathinda-Mansa road in Rampura Phul.

Appearing for the petitioners,advocate Ramandeep Singh Pandher had submitted that the beneficiaries had jointly purchased land in Rampura Phul,around 33 km from Bathinda town,for around Rs. 1.59 crore in February 2010. But a few days later,the state government decided to acquire it for around Rs. 7 crore. A total of 294 kanals and 9 marlas were acquired for the project vide notification dated April 16,2010,of which 247 kanals and 6 marlas belonged to the beneficiaries. The beneficiaries,who according to the petitioners,were close to revenue and public relations minister Bikramjit Singh Majithia,include Khushdev Singh,former councillor of Khanna municipal council,and Yadvinder Singh,district president of the Ludhiana Youth Akali Dal.

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