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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

UP: Farrukhabad admin to add SP leader’s name to list of ‘land mafia’

Urmila Rajput acquired a 3.65-acre Shia Waqf Board land in 2004 using fake documents, says Inquiry panel

Written by Manish Sahu | Lucknow | Updated: September 1, 2020 8:00:26 pm
Rajput had unsuccessfully contested the 2012 Assembly election on an SP ticket from Farrukhabad (Sadar).

The Farrukhabad district administration has decided to include senior Samajwadi Party leader Urmila Rajput’s name in the “land mafia” list after an inquiry found her guilty of grabbing a Shia Waqf Board land by using “fake documents”.

In its inquiry, the administration claimed to have found that Rajput, a two-time MLA, had illegally acquired the 3.65-acre land in 2004.

With the action, the future of an eight-year-old law college built on the land hangs in the air. Rajpur said she was also building a women’s college there.

The ‘Anti-bhoo Mafia’ (anti-land mafia) portal was set up by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in 2017 to identify people and companies that illegally acquire land.

District Magistrate Manvendra Singh has ordered that a case be lodged against her under relevant charges.

He said the land would be taken back from Rajput after certain court proceedings were completed.

He said the role of government officials and others would also be probed. Sources said many officials — posted at the tehsil where the land changes were made — had retired.

Rajput claimed that she was being harassed and targeted by the state government because of political differences.

In July this year, a local resident of Farukkhabad, Nahar Singh Rajput, filed a complaint with the district administration stating that she had fraudulently grabbed the Waqf Board land in Noorpur village. The DM directed sub-divisional magistrate of Sadar Anil Kumar to conduct an inquiry.

The inquiry found that the land was earlier under possession of one Mutalvi, who was working as its caretaker. It was later registered in the name of Nawab Syed Safdar Ali in the revenue record, said Anil Kumar. Through unregistered will, the land was transferred to Azadar Zaidi, a local resident, in 1991. A day before Zaidi’s death in 2004, the land was transferred to the SP leader through his will, said Anil Kumar.

“The will, which declared the transfer of land to Urmila Rajpur, was unregistered,” said Anil Kumar.

Rajput said the land transfer was documented in the revenue records. “In his will, Azadar Zaidi gave the land to me. We had family relations with him, and I used to help him regularly. I built a law college on the land and have been running it for the last eight years. Construction for a women’s college building is underway. I want to know why people were silent till now. After I invested money in the land, people started questioning me,” said Rajput, who won the 1991 and 1993 Assembly elections on a BJP ticket.

“The decision of the district administration is wrong because a tribunal court in Lucknow is hearing the matter. In January this year when the Shia Central Waqf Board raised the issue, I moved the court. I informed the district administration that the matter was pending in court, but they have already decided the issue,” said Rajput.

Farrukhabad SP president Nadeem Farooque said Rajput joined the party in 1997, and was not holding any post.

Rajput had unsuccessfully contested the 2012 Assembly election on an SP ticket from Farrukhabad (Sadar).

Last year, the Rampur district administration had put up local MP and SP leader Azam Khan’s name in the “land mafia” list over land grab charges.

He is accused of forcibly acquiring farmers’ land for extension of Mohammad Ali Jauhar University of which he is the founder and chancellor. He is lodged in Sitapur district jail.

Azam Khan’s son Mohammad Abdullah Azam Khan, MLA from Swar, had claimed that land of 26 complainants were purchased in 2006 and payments were made through cheques.

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