Editorial : land scams in Karnataka & India – an appeal to honourable supreme court of India
Our constitution of India , form of governance- democracy ,is one of the best in the world. The law has accepted & guaranteed the fact that all citizens of India are equal before law. However the law enforcement personnel –police , tax officials, labour officials , etc enforce law differentially between rich & poor , between those who give bribe & those not. Police , tax officials favourably treat rich & influential criminals favourably, whereas falsely implicate , harass, torture poor innocents. This is the main reason for CRIME RAJ in India.
Recently our publication made requests to public information officers of mysore urban development authority ( MUDA ) & Bangalore urban development authority ( BDA ) as per RTI ACT , seeking informations concerning their departments. Both of them failed to provide requested information , as they knew quite well that those informations will be a death knell for their corrupt crime raj. In a democracy “information to citizens & expressions of citzens” are lifeline for proper functioning of democracy. The citizen’s RIGHT TO INFORMATION is guaranteed under constitution of India as part of RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF SPEECH / EXPRESSION. INFORMATION & EXPRESSION ARE TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN & ARE INSEPARABLE . however the public servants are violating these fundamental rights of citizens as well as RTI ACT , to hide their crimes. Way back in 1990s bofors scandal involving roughly rs.35 crore raised such a huge cry resulting in change government at the centre, however the land scams in India is a huge huge very huge scandal running to 100000 crores & above. However the government & even the law courts are mum inspite of appeals by the aggrieved. There are land scams involving even high court & supreme court judges as beneficieries , this may be the reason for UNHOLY SILENCE OF JUDICIARY.
When a crime is noticed , it is the duty of the government to investigate who did it ? and to legally prosecute them in court & provide justice . if thousands of criminals , lakhs of criminals got together & did the same type of crimes , all of them must be legally prosecuted. Just for the overwhelming numbers of criminals law of the land cann’t be changed. However in the Karnataka state , many political bigwigs , rich crooks have done the same crime , LAND GRABBING – illegal possession of government land & illegal constructions over it. Important land records of those government lands , lands belonging to poor are lost in record rooms of civic bodies ( cunningly destroyed by corrupt officials ) Now, their political masters are legalizing the crimes . what a shame to the government of Karnataka ?
The shri.A.T. RAMA SWAMY , (M.L.A) standing committee in the legislative assembly is still probing the land grabbings in Karnataka. However the government in a hurry , is auctioning – off those government lands without proper publicity to the auction process , sufficient time for bidder’s expression of interest. In some cases , a pittance is levied as penalty for the illegal occupation to get it legalized. The government is not bothered about legally prosecuting the illegal occupier of those lands. In many civic bodies , important property documents belonging to the government & poor are missing from the record rooms. All these point towards the government intention , to legalise the crimes of illegal land occupiers who are nothing but their own political cronies.
The recent ordinance by government of Karnataka to regularize land deals is envisaging to legalize the crimes of rich. The illegal land conversions , land encroachments , encroachment of civic amenities made by the rich are being legalized with levying a pittance as penalty in the name of public welfare . Whereas the land worth at today’s market prices are 10’s of thousands of crore it is only wefare of the rich & mighty . IT IS GOING TO BE MOTHER OF ALL SCAMS. The authorities evict poor tribal people from their ancestral forest area in the name of conservation , evict tribal people from villages in the name of development without proper rehabilitation measures. The government is not giving land rights to slum dwellers , poor , dalits over the land they are dwelling , the government is deaf to appeals of dalits for land rights. However the same government is sympathetic to rich who have encroached land & built huge commercial complexes worth crores violating all norms with total disregard to civic amenity or safety.
Hereby , HRW appeals to honourable supreme court of India , to annul the bid process of government of Karnataka with respect to illegally occupied government lands & to annul this ordinance of government of Karnataka which seeks to legalize land crimes. Jai hind . vande mataram.
THE CLOUT OF LAND MAFIA IN INDIA -the governments daring to by-pass judiciary
An appeal ( PIL ) to the honourable supreme court of India
The recent attempts by government of India & other state governments to legalise land grabbings by enacting new land laws in the name of public welfare is farce . while crores of people are without shelter & are living on streets , people in slums , tribal lands are struggling for land rights since decades the governments were mum & deaf. Now , as the rulers themselves & their cronies have built illegal constructions running into crores they are shedding crocodile tears in the name of public welfare. In india, various state governments have enacted ” town municipal / city corporation laws & building laws” , to ensure orderly growth of cities & towns , to ensure the safety of buildings & it’s occupants , to ensure the safety of pedestrians & road users.
Numerous educated people , ruling elite – ministers , police , government officials , M.Ps , M.L.As , etc knowing fully well about the laws have illegally built bungalows , commercial complexes , throwing to wind all laws. In their greed they have shown utter contempt towards law. They have encroached dried –up lakes , rivulets , rain flow paths , drainages , foot paths , civic amenity sites. In their building there are violations of- lack of fire safety exits , lack of parking space , encroachment of foot paths , conservancy line , drainages , etc.
There is wide spread corruption in the corporation / municipal authorities. For a price officials have converted CA sites to commercial purposes , authorised deviations / encroachments of public
lands like foot paths , drainages , parking space , set-off , etc. The corporation officials themselves are violating city master plans. Even before authorising the conversions & encroachments of lands , the
corporation officials are not making alternate arrangements. By all these corrupt deeds many of the corporation officilas have become millionaires . however more & more road accidents are taking place , building collapses & fire tragedies are occurring , during heavy rainfalls water is getting clogged – ALL THESE RESULTING IN LOSS OF HUMAN LIVE & PROPERTIES. In recent days numerous murders have taken place over the real estate issues . THE CRIMINAL LAND GRABBERS MADE DEATH THREATS & FORCED THE PIL APPLICANT IN THE KARNATAKA HIGH COURT ABOUT LAND GRABBINGS IN KORAMANGALA LAYOUT BANGALORE. The government of karnataka instead of protecting the PIL applicant & upholding the law has taken sides with the land grabbers.
The state governments of karnataka & delhi has got M.L.As & officials who have themselves violated building laws & grabbed govt lands. Now , the two govts are contemplating to bring in laws regularising these land grabbing crimes for a pittance as penalty. All to by-pass judiciary. The governments are least bothered about the lives of poor & only too caring towards the land grabbing criminals. The same governments have not yet given land rights to poor slum dwellers / dalits , land rights to tribals living in forest since centuries , land rights to poor agricultural labourers, where as it is full of concern towards rich & mighty land grabbers – criminals. Bottom line – whatever be the magnitude of crime if you are rich & mighty law will be bended to suit you , by bad luck if you are a poor folk you are bound to suffer being on the right side of law also. Hereby , HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH urges requests the honourable supreme court of india , to register this as a PIL , to provide protection to the PIL applicant in bangalore & to take appropriate actions against the GOK & GOD nipping at bud their illegal motives to regularise land grabbings.
ILLEGALITIES IN AUCTION OF M/S IDEAL JAWA LTD MYSORE
During the auction of above sick industry the land usage was for industrial purpose only. so, people with other commercial objectives were not allowed to participate in the auction. Thereby, the final auctioned amount was very much less than the market value. This has a direct bearing on employees of that industry , lending banks , govt dept , etc who have all put forward their claims for dues from that industry. noW, all of them are getting very much less than what is due from the closed company. A loss of crores of rupees to banks , government , employees has been made by the cunningness of civic bodies.
Now in a backdoor move the M.U.D.A , K.I.A.D.B , M.C.C are moving to give land usage conversion to the new occupier, who is building posh villas & resorts here. Is it right & justified ? should not they conduct auction once again or charge market value to the new owner.
LAND MAFIA IN KARNATAKA
The land mafia which has links with political leadership & top govt servants in the state, is running business widely in & around bangalore,mysore & other major towns. The authorities like city corporation , B.D.A, M.U.D.A , K.I.A.D.B , etc are denotifying the lands meant for public welfare in favour of land mafia. The authorities have earmarked these lands for public welfare ie parks , schools , hospitals at the planning stage itself for current & future needs of the people. In most cases the land mafia has illegally occupied the lands , built commercial complexes & sold it for crores of rupees.
1. the authorities are not demolishing these illegal structures & prosecuting the occupiers.
2. In some cases the authorities are denotifying , regularizing those illegal occupations by levying a pittance as penalty which is very much less than the market value.
3. In some cases for example a notified site for school is alloted to an educational trust. They build 2 rooms in 25% of the site & state that this is free school meant for weaker sections. After a year or two , they state before the authority that to run this school they need funds. So they are planning to build commercial complexes around the school site & by the rent collected from shops they will run the school. In this manner sites meant for schools , hospitals , temples & other social organisations apply for conversion of land usage & use major portion of the land for commercial purposes.
Hereby , HRW urges the govt of karnataka & other authorities ,
1. to clearly demarcate the govt lands & announce it boldly to the public.
2. To clearly demarcate lands meant for public amenities both for current & future usage.
3. To clearly demarcate lands required for town planning say 20 years down the line.
4. To clearly mention in such plans the purpose it is reserved for ie parks , hospitals , schools , etc.
5. To impartially act against illegal occupiers – rich or poor.
6. Say while denotifying a land meant for school an alternate land for school must be incorporated in the original plan.
7. Before denotification public objections must be called for & considered responsibly.
8. After denotification the land must be sold at the market rate not the govt rate.
9. In case of land usage conversion also the objections from the public must be called for & considered responsibly.
10. After land usage conversion an alternate land must be incorporated in the plan for the original use.
11. In case of land usage conversion also the occupier must be charged at the market value.
12. To declare annually the property details of all officials with denotifying / land usage conversion authorities together with details of their family member’s properties with provision for public scrutiny, cross checking.
13. To ruthlessly prosecute the corrupt officials & ministers.
14. To make public the report of past district magistrate mysore mr. T.M. VIJAYA BHASKAR about illegal land dealings in & around mysore. Also the action taken report.
ILLEGALITIES IN BANGALORE-MYSORE EXPRESSWAY PROJECT
Different political parties are trading charges against each other about illegalities in the mysore-bangalore expressway project. Grave mistakes have been committed by the previous state governments. The saving grace is judiciary has taken note of it. The fundamental principle behind land acquisitions by the governments is to use that acquired lands for public welfare. As the govt acquires the land with this noble intentions even the land looser contents himself with compensation at govt rate. Always the govt rate is much below market value. If at all the govt wants to give out that acquired land to a private party for private use or for the use of a selected few, the govt must give prevailing market rate to the land looser. In such cases the govt does not have authority to force the land owner to sell his property.
In this mysore-bangalore 4 lane expressway project, following inconsistencies are there,
1. this road is not for free public use, but only for those who pays the toll fees.
2. The luxurious resorts , townships , etc which are to be built alongside this road are not open for free public usage but only for the rich who can afford it.
3. The govt has concluded this deal in a hush-hush manner.
4. Any disputes raised by this project should be addressed to international arbiter at london which a poor land owner or general public can ill-afford.
5. The govt has not paid the prevailing market value to the land loosers.
6. The govt has not given the option to land owners not to sell their property.
7. This whole project is for rich , built by the rich for the rich & not meant for public welfare.
The govt must give back the lands to the owners who wants it back & must pay the market value to those willing to sell. As this project is built by wealthy people for wealthy people why cann’t they cough- up market value?
CRIMES BY BANGALORE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY ( B.D.A)
AGAINST A POOR WOWAN
The B.D.A flouts it’s own rules & spreads red carpet for big land developers & land grabbers. B.D.A posting is a huge money spinner for corrupt officials. The corrupt B.D.A officials work hand in glove with criminal elements & rowdies. They illegally evict genuine allottees who are poor & without any connections from allotted prime lands & sell-off those prime land to the highest bidder of bribe. The poor fellow is re-alloted lands in backward areas & in some cases left in the lurch.
Now , take the following case. Mr. S.D. chandrashekaraiah a poor old man aged around 80 years was allotted with house no.185, kumaraswamy lay-out, first block, bangalore in 1978 vide letter no.
310/267/BDA/ADM/KMRSL(H)/78-79 dt 11/08/1978.
The chairman of B.D.A has allotted the built house on lease cum sale basis. The poor old man mr. S.D.chandrashekaraiah complied with all the rules & in accordance with it even deposited 25% of the house cost in B.D.A’S account. However when he went over to his allotted house for residing in it, he found out some rowdy elements were already residing there. He complained about this matter to the legal owner of the house ie B.D.A . the B.D.A officials didn’t take steps to evict the illegal encroachers nor did they make any complaint to the police. His appeals to B.D.A, chief minister of karnataka , etc fell on deaf ears. Hurt by this gross injustice & mounting financial burdens the poor old man died.
Subsequently, the poor man’s daughter smt. Nagalakshmi who was also very poor , appealed to the B.D.A authorities once again , to evict illegal encroachers from her father’s allotted house. This time the corrupt B.D.A officials played a different game. They showed her a vacant house, gave her oral instructions to live in that vacant house & told her that they will regularise it in due course. The hapless poor woman took huge loans & repaired the house fit for occupation. Just before she was to occupy that house , corrupt B.D.A officials once again planted rowdy elements in that house. Once again the poor woman was cheated. She lost her house, on top of it her loan burden mounted.
Till date, that poor woman is suffering from these gross injustices of B.D.A . SHAMELESS B.D.A OFFICIALS who take thousands of rupees salary & perks every month, all at the expense of tax-payer has not even cared to rectify the injustice. Thereby, they are violating the poor woman’s fundamental & human rights.
Hereby, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH urges the honourable chief minister of karnataka, honourable lokayuktha for karnataka , honourable chairman national human rights commission , honourable chairman national commission for women & honourable chairman state commission for women karnataka, to take the appropriate action & to speedily provide justice to this poor woman.
name : ………………………NAGARAJ.M.R.
Address : ……………….LIG-2 / 761 , HUDCO FIRST STAGE , OPP WATER WORKS OFFICE , LAKSHMIKANTANAGAR , HEBBAL , MYSORE – 570017 INDIA
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date : 06/10/2007 your’s sincerely,
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