NRI cheating case: Estate officer shiftedhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/nri-cheating-case-estate-officer-shifted/

NRI cheating case: Estate officer shifted

While the UT Vigilance is yet to arrest four accused wanted in the UK-based NRI cheating case,Home Secretary Ram Niwas on Monday transferred Assistant Estate Officer Ashwani Kumar,suspecting his involvement in the case.

While the UT Vigilance is yet to arrest four accused wanted in the UK-based NRI cheating case,Home Secretary Ram Niwas on Monday transferred Assistant Estate Officer Ashwani Kumar,suspecting his involvement in the case. Ashwani Kumar,who is also holding charge of Returning Officer in the forthcoming Panchayat Elections,will be relieved of his charge on Tuesday,after the UT Administration gets a nod from the State Election Commission. UT Administration has already sent a fax to the Election Commission,seeking permission to transfer Kumar.

Officials of UT Estate Office,in connivance with a battery of lawyers,had allegedly issued a No-Objection Certificate,followed by a registered sale deed of a SCF located in Sector 20,without the knowledge of its owner,Tara Singh. When Singh came to know of it,he brought it to the notice of the home secretary on Sunday,following which the Vigilance Department registered a criminal case and initiated investigation.

“Kumar’s transfer orders have been issued,but the formal nod of the State Election Commission is required,since he is the Returning Officer for the forthcoming elections. We shall get the orders tomorrow. Hargunjit Kaur,the Land Acquisition Officer,would be given all charge that Kumar was holding till date. Kumar would replace her as LAO for the time being,” said a senior UT Administration official.

Besides Ashwani Kumar,all those officials of Estate Office,who dealt with Tara Singh’s case file,will have to face inquiry. “The investigating officials are compiling all prima facie evidence and details,which would be put up before me in a formal report. Action would be taken against all those found guilty. Nobody will be spared,” said Ram Niwas.

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Meanwhile,the Vigilance Department conducted raids at various places in the city to nab the absconding accused — O P Mittal (Tara Singh’s tenant),Jaswant Singh (Tara Singh’s brother),Harnek Singh (middleman) and a UK-based advocate,JB Singh,whom Tara Singh had engaged for getting the SCF transferred in his name after his father’s death.

Tara Singh again met Ram Niwas on Monday and requested to get the forged sale-deed cancelled,which the land mafia in connivance with the officials of Estate Office,got executed without his knowledge.

In the wake of Tara Singh incident,the UT Administration on Monday decided to set up a grievance cell for NRIs to deal with their property disputes. “UT Administrator General S F Rodrigues (Retd) has taken a very serious view of this episode and has directed that a special cell should be set up,consisting of prominent citizens including lawyers,retired judges and legal experts,and headed by an Additional Deputy Commissioner,” said Ram Niwas.

The cell would provide free counseling to the NRIs. The cell will be assisted by Special Police Force,which would be directly acting under the orders of the cell to take immediate preventive and legal action against those who have been illegally occupying NRI properties. The cell will be publicised on the Chandigarh Administration’s website and a formal notification in this regard would be issued soon. The Home Secretary would monitor the functioning of the cell on a regular basis. A brochure with detailed guidelines,helpline numbers and other details and addresses of the members of the Grievance Redressal Cell,will be published very soon,said Ram Niwas.