Trouble Grows For Ex-BJP Leader Lal Singh

CBI likely to Charge Singh’s Wife, Officials In Land Grab Case

Jammu: The CBI is likely to name the wife of a former BJP leader and revenue officers in a charge sheet to be filed in a case related to encroachment of a huge tract of government land for running an educational trust, officials said here on Wednesday.

The agency has already sent a letter to the Jammu and Kashmir Revenue Department seeking sanction to prosecute one of their officers in connection with the case, they said.

The CBI has also set in motion the process to file a charge sheet against the chairperson of R B Educational Trust, the wife of a former BJP leader Lal Singh who was also quizzed in connection with the probe, the officials said.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had in September last year registered a case against R B Educational Trust through its chairperson and Singh’s wife Kanta Andotra, former deputy commissioner of Kathua Ajay Singh Jamwal and former tehsildar of Marheen Avatar Singh.

Besides them, then Naib Tehsildar Chann Rorian (Marheen Tehsil) Des Raj, then Girdawar Ram Pal, then Patwari Sudesh Kumar and other unidentified persons were named in the FIR.

The role of the revenue officer emerged during the probe and the Revenue Department has been approached seeking sanction to prosecute him, the officials said

The educational trust runs a school, B Ed (Bachelor of Education) and nursing colleges on the land, they said.

Following the registration of the case, the CBI had conducted searches at the premises of the educational trust, its chairperson and residential premises of other accused in 10 locations, including Jammu and Kathua, which had led to the recovery of documents related to movable and immovable property, etc.

The probe agency had in June, 2020 registered a preliminary enquiry (PE) on the allegations of encroachment of a huge tract of public/government/forest land in Kathua by certain people in violation of the Jammu and Kashmir Agrarian Reforms Act in connivance with revenue and forest officials, the CBI had said earlier.

“It was further alleged that the accused were involved in the conspiracy with the said educational trust through its chairperson to allow the trust to retain the land beyond the permissible ceiling limit of 100 standard kanal fixed in the Agrarian Reforms Act by deliberately giving the wrong exemption of 32 kanals of grazing land as per said Act and showing the land as ‘orchard’, which was not an orchard as per revenue record,” it said.

“It was further alleged that the accused were involved in the conspiracy with the said educational trust through its chairperson to allow the trust to retain the land beyond the permissible ceiling limit of 100 standard kanal fixed in the Agrarian Reforms Act by deliberately giving the wrong exemption of 32 kanals of grazing land as per said Act and showing the land as ‘orchard’, which was not an orchard as per revenue record,” it said.

It was also alleged that the educational trust, in connivance with the other accused, got wrong calculation done of standard kanal of the land measuring 316 kanal and 17 marlas to escape the ceiling imposed by the JK Agrarian Reforms Act, the CBI said.

Kanal and marlas are traditional land measurement units.

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