Monday, July 5, 2010

Bureaucrats are land grabbers: Sample Chandigarh

VIP land grabbers Chandigarh has been choked
The Tribune Monday, July 5, 2010, Chandigarh, India

WHEN Le Corbusier planned Chandigarh, he had ordained that no other city should come up anywhere in its vicinity. He would have never imagined that Panchkula and Mohali would be developed within metres of the dream city. As if that was not bad enough, much of the open space in its periphery has been grabbed by land sharks. Agricultural land has already been converted into lavish farmhouses and illegal colonies. Those who are supposed to stop such illegal activity have turned a blind eye because the land grabbers stand far higher than them in the hierarchy. Whether it is Punjab politicians, including Cabinet ministers and MLAs, or IAS and PCS officers, almost everybody who is somebody indulged in the land loot.
Thanks to the media focus, this systematic robbery is being looked into by the judiciary. Many uncomfortable truths are tumbling out. Some 145 IAS officers and 180 PCS officers are among those who grabbed land on the periphery. An ordinary person doing so is bad enough. When those who form the steel frame of the administration do so, the crime is far more serious. What makes it even worse is the fact that many of them have not even been able to explain where they got the money to make these acquisitions. One hopes that the inquiry by Punjab DGP (Railways) Chander Shekhar will reach its logical conclusion.
Besides the VIP land grabbers, the periphery was also ruined by nearly 350 illegal colonisers from 1984 to 2010. They floated societies at Zirakpur, Kansal, Karoran, Mohali, Dera Bassi, Lalru, Dhakoli, Bishanpura, Baltana, Himmatgarh and Sohana, etc, as if they had no fear of the law. Apparently, they were certain that the police would not “interfere”. Such lawlessness could not take place without the tacit approval of higher-ups. Only if all wrongdoers are deprived of their illegal properties and are also fined heavily would the future land grabbers think twice before emulating them.
VIP land grabbers Chandigarh has been choked

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