Probe sought against DC, Assistant Commissioner of Dakshina Kannada

The Geological Survey of India (GSI) on Tuesday moved the Karnataka High Court seeking a direction to the State government to conduct an inquiry against the Deputy Commissioner and the Assistant Commissioner of Dakshina Kannada district for allegedly failing to protect the interests of the State and the Union governments in a case related to acquisition of land for the agency in Mangalore.

The GSI has also complained in its petition that the Assistant Commissioner-cum-Land Acquisition Officer had been misleading the court and a district government pleader had been damaging the interests of both the governments.

It was because of “misleading information” that a Mangalore court, on September 25, 2013, ordered attachment and sale of immovable properties of the offices of the Deputy Commissioner. The Sessions Court had fixed October 30 for spot sale of the properties.

Justice B.V. Pinto, before whom the petition came up for hearing, stayed the sale proclamation order and ordered issue of notice to the State and others.

4.6 acres acquired

The petition said that the State acquired 4.6 acres of land for the GIS’s office and residential quarters at Attavar in Mangalore in 1983 and the land was handed over to the agency in 1986 after it paid Rs. 15.82 lakh towards compensation at Rs. 2 lakh an acre. However, a Sessions Court in Mangalore, in 1998–99, enhanced the compensation to Rs. 15 lakh an acre with interest.

The GIS deposited Rs. 51.9 lakh out of the total payable compensation on the direction of the High Court, which initially stayed the Sessions Court’s order. As the High Court in 2003 and the Supreme Court in 2006 upheld the enhanced compensation, the GIS deposited the remaining Rs. 1.39 crore for disbursement. The Mangalore court disbursed compensation to the landowners between 2008 and 2010.

It has been complained in the petition that the Assistant Commissioner-cum-Land Acquisition Officer and the district government pleaders accepted the “wrong” claim made by landowners in 2012 for payment of another Rs. 1.61 crore and asked the GIS to deposit the amount.

The Assistant Commissioner-cum-Land Acquisition Officer, in September 2012, ordered for forfeiture of the GIS’s properties in the land records after the Mangalore court issued sale proclamation order for selling properties of the DC’s offices in September 2012 for failing to deposit Rs. 1.61 crore as claimed by the landowners.

It has alleged in the plea that though the execution petition was filed in 2000, the GIS was not made a party in the execution petition till January 2013, when the agency itself impleaded in the case. The GIS was also not made a party in the case seeking enhanced compensation, between 1987 and 1999, and it was on the High Court’s direction the agency was made a party in 1999, the petition said.

Claiming that it had already paid Rs. 38,645 in excess of compensation awarded by the court, the GIS sought action against the DC, Assistant Commissioner-cum-Land Acquisition Officer and the district government pleader.

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