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Probe into multi-crore Roshini scam must reach its logical conclusion: JKNPP chief

Probe into multi-crore Roshini scam must reach its logical conclusion: JKNPP chief

Jammu, Sep 17 (PTI) Jammu and Kashmir National Panthers Party on Tuesday said the ongoing ACB probe into the alleged cornering of high-value prime land in Jammu and Srinagar cities through misuse of a now-repealed law, Roshni Act, must reach its logical conclusion."As the probe has been ordered into the Roshini scam, we hope it would be taken to its logical conclusion without being scuttled midway like earlier enquiries," JKNPP chairman and former minister Harsh Dev Singh told reporters here.He said "previous government failed to catch even a single big fish involved in such land scams of gargantuan proportions in the state".J&K Governor Satya Pal Mail last week ordered a probe into the alleged cornering of high-value prime land in Jammu and Srinagar cities by irregular and fraudulent implementation of the Jammu and Kashmir State Lands (Vesting of Ownership to Occupants) Act, 2001 also known as Roshni Act.The law, repealed last year, had been enacted by the Farooq Abdullah government to tackle encroachments by giving land rights to its occupants on payment of market price.It also envisaged enriching the public exchequer by Rs 25,000 crore by transferring 20 lakh 'kanals' of land to its occupants. One 'kanal' is around 506 square metre.In the wake of reports of the misuse of the law, Governor Malik had repealed the Roshni Act prospectively in 2018, stopping all further proceedings under it to ensure that no further fraud takes place in garb of legal provisions. Despite the repeal of the law, complaints about the past irregularities, especially related to its misuse to grab prime lands in Jammu and Srinagar, kept reaching the governor's office.The complaints alleged several pieces of high-value plots in Jammu and Srinagar districts have been procured illegally or fraudulently by individuals, not entitled to any benefit under the law.Accordingly, the governor decided to launch a full-fledged probe into the matter.Questioning the fate of earlier probes into the Roshni scams by the State Vigilance Organization, JKNPP chief lamented that not a single politician or any land shark has been booked in the case.Singh said a 2014 CAG report had pointed out severe irregularities and large scale violations of legal provisions in allotments of lands to influential politicians, bureaucrats and other land mafia, but the findings of the report was put under carpet.Describing Roshni scam as the biggest-ever land scam in the state, Singh appealed to the governor to get the probe monitored by a retired apex court judge for a fair and unbiased result.He hoped the probe into the Roshni scam will not meet the same fate as those into of Reliance Insurance scam, Dul Hasti Power Hydro Power Project scam, J&K Bank recruitment scam and forest scam, which, he said, were highlighted with great fanfare but eventually ended in smoke. PTI AB RAXRAX