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DB directs DGP to monitor CB probe into Chatta Sunjwan land scam

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Court denies bail to inter-state drug peddler duoSTATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: Disposing of the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed in connection with Chatta Sunjwan Land Scam, the Divisional Bench of State High Court, in a significant development, on Monday, directed the Director General of Police (DGP) to monitor the ongoing investigations by Crime Branch for expeditious conclusion on merits.
The DB was informed by Senior AAG Seema Shekhar that the entire record has been furnished by Deputy Commissioner Jammu and Tehsildar Bahu to Crime Branch.
Initially, the probe was entrusted to CB by GAD on the basis of findings of the then Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Shantmanu who had established tampering of revenue records with regard to 20 kanals of State land falling in Khasra No 1442 situated at Sunjwan.
The Division Bench, comprising First Puisne Judge Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar and Justice B.S Walia today directed the Crime Branch Jammu to conclude the probe in a non-partisan manner and also directed the General Administration Department to ensure that the probe be concluded without any further delay.
The Division Bench further observed that looking into the nature of the case no time period can be fixed for completion of probe but the Investigating Officer is expected to finalize the probe in a time bound manner.
After hearing Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed with Advocate Rahul Raina, appearing for the petitioner whereas Senior AAG Seema Shekhar for GAD and Crime Branch, Senior Advocate L.K Sharma with Advocate Gurupartap Singh for SRK Associates, Senior Advocate M.A. Goni with Advocate Rahul Pant for newly impleaded Revenue Officials, Advocates Adarsh Sharma and Monika Kohli for Jammu Development Authority, the Division Bench in the open court also directed the de-linking of Miscellaneous Petition and asked the Registry to list it separately and further directed the Commissioner /Secretary to Government of J and K Housing and Urban Development Department and Vice-Chairman JDA to respond to the afore said Miscellaneous Petition within two weeks. During proceedings, Advocate S.S Ahmed drew the attention of the Division Bench towards the last order passed on 10th October, 2016 whereby Division Bench had directed Senior AAG Seema Shekhar to take up the matter with Deputy Commissioner Jammu as the Crime Branch in its status report had complained about the non-furnishing of the records by the revenue authorities and it had further been divulged in the afore said status report that the non-furnishing of the records has stalled the ongoing probe into the Chatta Sunjwan Land Scam.
Advocate S.S Ahmed further submitted that Deputy Commissioner Jammu has filed a compliance report indicating the compliance of the directions passed on 3rd October, 2016. He further submitted that it is averred in the said compliance afore report that the Deputy Commissioner Jammu requested SSP Crime Branch Jammu to depute his liaison officer on 6th October, 2016 for sorting out the issues relating to the subject matter. The compliance report further stated that Abid Khawaja Inspector of Crime Branch accordingly visited the office of Deputy Commissioner Jammu on 6th October, 2016 and at the relevant time the Deputy Commissioner Jammu had convened a meeting and summoned the Tehsildar Bahu alongwith every revenue official of Tehsil Bahu to facilitate the Crime Branch Officials access to the relevant records. The report further said that the records which were required by the Crime Branch in connection with the investigation/verification primarily form part of the records of Tehsil Bahu and the Revenue Staff of the Tehsil Bahu as such was put at the disposal of the Crime Branch to facilitate them in their verification/investigation and were directed to provide every possible assistance to the Crime Branch.
Advocate S.S Ahmed submitted that the petitioner on 7th September, 2015 had filed a Miscellaneous Petition No.04/2015 wherein the directions were sought to the Chief Secretary, Commissioner/Secretary GAD and Commissioner/Secretary Housing and Urban Development Department to initiate appropriate action against all those officers/officials of JDA who miserably failed to take action against M/s SRK Associates on the directions of the Administrative Department issued vide No.U&D/15/2008/JDA/AS-32 dated 5th February, 2008 whereby the then VC JDA had been directed to take further necessary action to re-visit/put on hold the building permission granted in favour of M/s SRK Associates.
Advocate Ahmed said that notices in the afore said Miscellaneous Petition were issued to the Secretaries, GAD, Housing and Urban Development Department and Vice-Chairman JDA on 16th September, 2015 requiring them to file their response but no response was filed and further time was allowed by the Division Bench on 3rd November, 2015 but till date response to the said Miscellaneous Petition is awaited. Advocate Ahmed sought appropriate directions to the senior functionaries in view of the non-filing of the response to the MP No.04/2015.
At this stage Senior Advocate L K Sharma with Advocate Gurupartap Singh appearing for SRK Associates submitted that the petitioner is protracting the litigation and the afore said issue was never the part of the original relief claimed in the PIL. The senior counsel vehemently argued that a valid building permission was granted in favour of SRK Associates and no interference is warranted in the matter. Division Bench at this stage directed Advocate S S Ahmed to read out various reliefs claimed in the Public Interest Litigation and after considering the reliefs the Division Bench in the open court observed that the inquiry in the matter stands already completed by Shantmanu (IAS) the then Divisional Commissioner Jammu and action has also been initiated on the said inquiry report by the GAD by referring the matter to the Crime Branch Jammu for a thorough probe and with regard to disciplinary action in the matter Senior Advocate M.A. Goni with Advocate Rahul Pant appearing for the newly impleaded revenue officials apprised the Division Bench that the revenue officials have already been charge sheeted by the Financial Commissioner (Revenue) and they have submitted their statement of defence.
Division Bench after noticing various prayers made in the PIL observed that the relief prayed stands allowed and certain reliefs have been rendered infructuous in view of various orders passed from time to time in this PIL.

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