The Lokayukta sleuths, who probed the alleged irregularities in denotification of two plots of land in Lottegollahalli, have pointed to lack of coordination and transparency between various departments in land denotification-related issues.
The observation was made while filing a ‘B’ report (closure report) before the 23rd Additional City Civil Court in the Lottegollahalli case in which the names of the Deputy Chief Minister R. Ashok and the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa figured prominently.
The probe, however, found Mr. Ashok to have violated Section 79A of Karnataka Land Reforms Act and the Lokayukta has sought action against him under Sections 177 and 181 of Indian Penal Code for falsifying his income.
In a letter to the Chief Secretary S.V. Ranganath, Lokayukta Additional Director-General of Police H.N.S. Rao said in the specific case of the Lottegollahalli denotification, there was neither coordination nor transparency between Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), Revenue Department and the Sub-Registrar’s offices.
“The endorsement by BDA during the denotification process does not provide any information on the fact that the land was in the government’s possession, the denotification process was incomplete and that change of ownership should not take place,” the letter said.
However, using these lacunae that suppress the facts about the status on ownership of land, the khata for 9 guntas in survey number 10/1 was changed to the name of G. Shamanna, one of the accused in the Lottegollahalli denotification case, from the BDA on January 31, 2003. This change of ownership was based on the incomplete endorsement given by the BDA on November 13, 2002 and the letter given by BDA to Special Tahsildar on January 25, 2003, following which the land was registered at the Sub-Registrar’s office.
The ownership of land was subsequently transferred to Mr. Ashok by Mr. Shamanna. All of these show that there has been no coordination between the departments, the letter said.
It also said that the BDA officials acknowledged that the denotified land was in physical possession of the owners even after it was notified.
“The [Urban Development Department] officials also confessed that this aspect had not been brought to the notice of the BDA officials,” said the letter, highlighting lack of coordination and transparency between the UDD and BDA.