The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Scam lands officer in soup

Giridih, Sept. 20: District deputy collector (DCLR) Pawan Kumar today conceded that he was under “constant threats” from “several parties” ever since he unearthed the Giridih land scam.

The collector was talking exclusively to The Telegraph today. Kumar had recently unearthed a land scam involving some 631 acre in Sikrudih panchayat under Deori.

“Be it leaders or bureaucrats or the land mafia — every single party is targeting and threatening me. I have been asked to ‘face the consequences’ because I revealed the truth to the media,” said Kumar. “Even my bosses are not happy with me. They are not treating me well,” added the DCLR.

Kumar, who is the 18th DCLR of Giridih joined his office two months ago. Soon afterwards, the officer was taken aback to “notice large irregularities” in every land file.

One of his first assignments took him to Sikrudih panchayat to verify a plot.

There the villagers vent their ire on him for the “glaring” irregularities in the sale and purchase of land. They held him captive. At that time Kumar had assured the villagers that he would personally look into the matter.

Soon, Kumar “discovered” that Deori block officers, along with the circle in charge and the circle officer, had not only sold 631-acre of government (gair majrua khas) lands, but had also passed their mutation deeds (jamabandi).

The district registry office, too, played a vital role in the entire process. The officer also found proof of more such deeds of 30-odd acres.

Sources said the DCLR in his report to deputy commissioner Birendra Ram had recommended strict action against the karamchari, circle officer and circle in charge. However, the DC sought a “final report” from subdivisonal magistrate Iqbal Ansari and additional collector Gusai Urao before taking any actions. When the other two recommended the same the DC suspended the rajasaw karamchari and cancelled the jamabadi (deed) of the controversial 631acres.

But the circle officer and in charge continue to roam free, where many believe they, too, should have faced official inquiry.

“I have done my job. Now, if the government does not do its duty, or if the district administration does not wake up to the emergency, the fate of the area would hang in balance,” signed off Kumar. .

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