Other States

Minister, Chief Secretary clash over ‘encroached’ land in J&K

The dispute between Jammu and Kashmir Revenue Minister Aijaz Khan and Chief Secretary Iqbal Khanday over the encroachment of Kahcharai land at the posh Friends Enclave, outside Srinagar Airport, took an ugly turn on Saturday, leading to a clash on the spot and registration of a criminal case.

Sources revealed to The Hindu that the police station of Humhama (Budgam) filed an FIR under sections 447-A and 132 of Ranbir Penal Code against Bharat Bhushan and Muzaffar Ahmad Jan, senior functionaries of Jammu and Kashmir Cooperative Housing Corporation [JKCHC], which has developed the colony.

The FIR, according to government sources, was filed based on a telephonic complaint of the policemen guarding the house belonging to the Chief Secretary and his wife Kaneez Fatima, a Principal District & Sessions Judge.

Sources said that the clash between the Chief Secretary and Revenue Minister occurred when Mr. Khanday and his wife objected to construction of the boundary wall being raised around the Minister’s house. It was complained that a piece of Kahcharai land was being encroached and annexed to the Minister’s premises illegally.

Counter complaints

Eyewitnesses said that the Minister complained to the Revenue authorities and Police that the Chief Secretary and his brother-in-law Asgar Samoon, a senior IAS officer who is currently Commissioner-Secretary Agriculture Production, had both “encroached” 16 Marlas of the Kahcharai land each and annexed the same “illegally” to their land of 27 Marlas each.

The Minister directed the Revenue authorities to remove both the alleged encroachments. However, under counter-pressure from an influential IAS lobby, the Revenue officials turned to the other side and the Tehsildar filed a complaint against the JKCHC and the Revenue Minister.

When the JKCHC staff visited the spot, there was an altercation between the two sides. Even as the JKCHC people threatened to take the matter to the “highest offices in the country”, their application seeking registration of FIR against the Chief Secretary’s guards was not entertained.

Later, police attached both the applications — one filed by the Tehsildar against the JKCHC and another filed by JKCHC against the Chief Secretary’s house-guards — to the FIR originally registered against the JKCHC.

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Printable version | Dec 2, 2020 6:24:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/minister-chief-secretary-clash-over-encroached-land-in-jk/article6160670.ece

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