Team Formed To Trace Papers Related To Lal Singh’s Trust

Jammu: A team has been formed by the Kathua Collector to trace some documents related to the allotment of land to an educational trust in Jammu and Kashmir, which is under the CBI’s preliminary enquiry, officials said on Thursday.

The move comes as some of the documents, requested for examination by the central probe agency, were allegedly found missing, the officials said.

“A team has been formed by the Kathua Collector to locate the documents related to the allotment of land, an official said, requesting anonymity.

Earlier, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had sought details from a former deputy commissioner of Kathua in connection with its preliminary enquiry into allegations of land grabbing by the educational trust run by a former minister.

The CBI had last month registered a Preliminary Enquiry (PE) against R B Educational Trust of Kathua and unidentified public servants to probe allegations of illegal gratification and extraneous consideration by revenue and forest officials of Kathua for allowing sale and purchase of forest land, the officials said.

During the preliminary enquiry, the agency tried to find out whether material existed to move ahead with a formal registration of a Regular Case or FIR to start investigation.

The trust, run by former Jammu and Kashmir minister Lal Singh, has a school, B.Ed and nursing colleges on the land. Its transactions have now come under the scanner of the central agency for alleged irregularities in purchase of the land, they said.

According to the CBI’s PE, it is alleged that false certificates claiming that such land comes under exempted category under the Jammu and Kashmir Agrarian Reforms Act were used in its purchase by the educational trust, the officials said.

The preliminary enquiry by the CBI has alleged that the trust, a beneficiary of such alleged illegal acts, continues to be in possession of huge tracts of land in gross violation of ceiling prescribed under the JK Agrarian Reforms Act, 1976, they said.

During the preliminary enquiry no searches can be conducted or no one can be summoned for recording statements without consent.

Lal Singh had last year quit the BJP and floated the Dogra Swabhiman Sangathan (DSS).

He and the then industries minister Chander Prakash Ganga had resigned from the PDP-BJP dispensation in 2018 after questions were raised over their participation in a Hindu Ekta Manch rally organised in support of those arrested in connection with the rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua that year.

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