Staff Reporter

Says a cell has been formed to look into complaints

PUDUCHERRY: Chief Minister N. Rangasamy on Friday assured the Assembly that stern action would be taken against those indulging in land grabbing.

Replying to a question raised by N. Kalainathan (CPI), he said a cell had been formed under the chairmanship of the District Collector to look into complaints about land grabbing incidents. As many 463 complaints were brought to the notice of the cell and 302 out of them had been settled, he said adding that 41 persons had been arrested in land grabbing cases.

Mr. Kalainathan said several incidents of land grabbing had been reported in Puducherry. Members belonging to the Dravida Munntera Kazhagam, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Puducherry Munntera Congress and Pattali Makkal Katchi also raised the issue and sought stern action against those indulging in land grabbing.

S.P. Sivakumar (DMK) said that he himself had taken up several such cases with the cell but no steps had been taken to investigate them. He also charged the police with not giving importance to bring to book those anti-socials involved in land grabbing.

A. Anbalagan (AIADMK) said functionaries of several parties were supporting persons who indulged in such acts. Incidents of land grabbing could be curbed if the leaders of political parties stayed away from such elements, he added.

Replying to a question , the Chief Minister said essential commodities such as toor dhal, black gram, chilli, coriander and palmoil would be supplied to red card holders through fair price shops from April 14. Initially, the five commodities would be supplied and based on the response, more items would be included, he said.

Mr. Rangasamy said he would consider the demand raised by the members to form watchdog panels at village and district levels to monitor the supply of essential commodities through the PDS.

Earlier, the Assembly witnessed noisy scenes on the government’s decision to enter into an agreement with J.R. Power to mine coal and generate electricity.

Raising the issue, Mr. Anbalagan (AIADMK) said the agreement lacked transparency. Industries and Power Minister V. Vaithialingam said the Centre had given the coal mine in Naini area of Orissa to the Union Territor to mine coal and produce electricity. The administration had only a short period to choose the private agency and hence could not call for a tender, Mr. Vaithilingam said.