Memorandum submitted to Chief Minister, Odisha by Civil Society Groups demanding immediate arrest of Ministers, MLAs, Officers involved in grabbing land illegally and CBI enquiry into land scam
Mass Rally and Demonstration was organised on 22 September 2015 under the banner of 30 Social Action Groups demanding enquiry into irregularities and illegalities in respect of allotment of land/plot by GA Department, BDA,CDA and IDCO by CBI and immediate arrest of Ministers, MLAs, Fraud Babas and Private Institutions illegally occupying Govt. land. Rally with participation of hundreds of the people and social activists started from Ram Mandir square and reached at lower PMG at 12 noon. Then mass meeting was organised under presidentship of Pradip Pradhan, State Convener, Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan and many activists like Ashok Mallik, Pratap Sahu, Sudhir Mohanty, Arun Swain, Sanjay Sahu, Sachikant Pradhan, Dibakar Nayak, Abdul Walli and others spoke in the meeting. A four-member delegation headed by Pratap sahu visited secretariat and presented Memorandum in the Secretariat.
Background of Mass Demonstration
CAG report which was presented in the Assembly in 2014 has exposed in graphic details the instances of corruption, irregularities, undue favour, violation of law and arbitrariness in respect of allotment of Government land to the Individuals, Private Educational Institutions, Hospitals and Hotels among others. The CAG has also pointed out a systemic failure as evident from callousness and inefficiency along with complicity of the administration, which has resulted in revenue loss to the State exchequer amounting to a staggering sum of thousands of crore rupees. For your kind information, the CAG Expose is just a tip of the iceberg as its audit was limited to only a few Test cases. With undeniable proofs and evidences, it has also brought to the limelight how a dubious nexus among the vested interests of the politicians, bureaucrats and business class has been systematically working to loot and plunder the public wealth of Odisha.
After this expose, the political parties and Civil Society Groups reacted strongly and demanded CBI inquiry into such huge irregularities and illegalities in respect of allotment of land in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack. Smelling trouble from public reaction, the Govt. constituted Task Force in August 2014 which submitted its report in Nov. 2014. Then, following the recommendation of Task Force, the State Govt. came out with Action Taken Report in Dec. 14. Though around eight months passed, the State Govt. has not been able to retain a single decimal of land or to arrest single illegal occupant of the land.
On the other hand, on media expose about huge land illegally occupied by fraud Sarathi Baba and Sura Baba, the State Govt. not only ordered for crime branch enquiry but resumed the encroached land immediately and arrest both fraud Babas. But irony is that though there is full proof about land illegally encroached by Swami Shankaranand Giri, president of Kriya Yoga Foundation Trust and Baba Aviram, the State administration has not been able to take any steps to recover the land from them. Rather the Govt. is leaving no stone unturned to protect them. Similarly, though land scam of Satish Gajbhiye, suspended IPS officer has been proved, the State Govt. is yet to arrest him and recover the land from him.
Few examples about callousness and involvement of Govt. in promoting and protecting land grabbers and illegalities in allotment of land in different parts of the state is cited herewith.
a. Sri Pramod Mallik, MLA of Niali constituency has illegally encroached two acres of Gochar land in his village Kulashree of Niali Block. Though the villagers have filed complaints since few months, Tahasildar has neither conducted any enquiry nor taken any steps to resume the land from him.
b. In 1957, Dr. Harekrustan Mohatab has given some areas of land to the people of Nayapaslli Bhoi Sahi for social function and playground for the Children. Now, the State has forcibly occupied the land for use of Nayapalli Police station. The inhabitants of Bhoi Sahi have strongly objected it.
- As the State Govt. has miserably failed to protect the land of the state from land grabbers and take any steps against the Ministers, MLAs and officers involved in irregularities and illegalities in respect of allotment of land, there is no option except ordering CBI enquiry into land scam in Odisha.
- Take immediate action to arrest Sri Satish Gajbhiye, suspended IPS officer, Aviram Baba and Swami Shankaranand Giri and resume the land illegally occupied by them.
- Put in public domain details of the land owned and illegally occupied by Baba, Ashram, Matha and Mandir in different districts of the state within 15 days.
- Withdraw the Odisha Prevention of Land Encroachment Act, 2015 which is anti-people and anti-poor.
- When a few powerful people are allotted huge quantity of valuable land at throw away price, the poor, tribals, Dalits and landless are not provided few dcml Land despite their hard effort since last 40 years. They are running from pillar to post to get few square foot of land for their survival. In this context, the state Govt. should allot land to the dalits, tribals, and landless people within 3 months after conducting thorough survey in every Gram Panchayat.
- Order immediately for enquiry into illegalities and irregularities in allotment of land to KIIT by IDCO and take action against Achyut Samant.
- Restore Govt. quarters from the Ministers, MLAs and Officials who have taken plot/ land and constructed building and given rent to others.
Pradip Pradhan, M-9937843482
Plot No-D-27, Maitree Vihar
Post-Rail Vihar, Bhubaneswar-23Date-22.09.2015