Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday ordered a vigilance probe into the alleged encroachment of water works land at Abohar by a relative of former Deputy CM Sukhbir Badal and five others. The issue was raised by Congress MLA Sukhjinder during the Question Hour in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha in Chandigarh. Replying to it, Punjab cabinet minister Navjot Singh Sidhu acknowledged that the land was encroachment by some people. He said that in 1961, 9.25 acres of land was acquired to increase the capacity of the water works, built in 1931, at Abohar and people from whom the land was acquired were given adequate compensation at that time.
The record pertaining to this is secured in record room at Ferozepur, he added. But after the formation of SAD-BJP government in 2007, some SAD leaders allegedly tampered with the government record and got some portion registered in their names, Sidhu alleged. The then Deputy Commissioner without checking the record ordered the demarcation to facilitate the illegal encroachment of this land worth crores by these people, he said. These people, Sidhu said, not only encroached this land but also the next ‘khasra’ number outside the ambit of registry.
He further informed the House that the registries were made in the names of Paramjit Singh alias Lali Badal (uncle of ex-deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal), Gurdit Singh, Mahinder Pratap, Ram Dayal, Varinder Pal Singh and Ashok Kumar. Agreeing to the MLA’s demand, Sidhu sought a thorough probe against illegal encroachers by Vigilance and stringent action against the guilty from the chief minister, who then ordered a probe into the matter.