The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Salt Lake scramble for tenant dossier

The drug racket bust in Salt Lake has triggered alarm among house-owners in the township. They have decided to take the initiative to keep the police posted about their tenants.

Police officials say government officials, too, are among those who have started sending in details of their tenants to the local thanas.

“We have received a lot of letters from residents, with detailed information about their tenants,” confirmed additional superintendent of police (Salt Lake) Ajay Nand on Tuesday.

Nand held a meeting with officials of the three police stations of Salt Lake and asked them to coordinate with the block committees to ensure that all house-owners provide detailed information about their tenants to the police.

Last Monday, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) raided the first floor of the residence of former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) additional director Upen Biswas. The swoop, in Salt Lake’s CJ block, led to the arrest of three Myanmarese and two Chinese nationals. However, Sang Niang Thanga, who rented the apartment, gave the NCB sleuths the slip.

“The incident has sent ripples across the township and residents are now no longer reluctant to give the authorities information about their tenants,” an official said. According to him, the explanation of the trend lies in the fact that a large number of the residents are government officials and employees, “who do not want to get involved in any unnecessary trouble”.

The Bidhannagar Municipality authorities are also busy finding ways to assist the police in curbing crime in Salt Lake.

“If block committees can be effectively involved in coordinating with the police regarding information on tenants, it would help in a big way to stop such criminal activities in the township,” CPM leader and councillor Chandan Ghosh said.

“In a township like Salt Lake, there is little the authorities can do without the help of house-owners and block committees,” he added.

“We will be taking an initiative to make this coordination more effective,” Ghosh said.

Municipality officials had earlier stressed the need for getting the information about tenants for a different reason. They said that apart from the safety aspect, the landlords should properly intimate the authorities about their tenants to make it easier for them to make a correct assessment of taxes.

“It will also make things easier for the landlords if any trouble occurs,” a municipality official pointed out.

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