VISAKHAPATNAM: Collector Pravin Kumar has issued a showcause notice to Visakhapatnam revenue divisional officer (RDO) S Venkateswarlu on the recommendations of the SIT looking into the Vizag land grab scam and in response to the allegations of MLA Peela Govinda Satyanarayana and MANSAS Trust executive officer K Ramachandra Mohan.
A few days ago, the MLA, who was booked for allegedly grabbing 48.55 acres of land at Ramavaram in Anandapuram complained to the Collector that the RDO had provided false information to the SIT out of vengeance against him and delayed a verdict in the case after the MLA refused to offer him a bribe of `20 crore. The RDO is facing several other charges too. A complaint was lodged at Anandapuram Police Station by the MANSAS EO claiming that 19 acres worth `40 crore belonging to the trust was encroached upon by lease agreement holders.
Mohan also complained that some individuals had encroached 99.2 acres at Gangasaani Agraharam in Anandapuram mandal belonging to Kasi Visweswara Swami Temple, an adopted shrine of the Simhachalam Devasthanam. After the EO approached the RDO court, Venkateswarlu allegedly wrote a letter to the Chief Commissioner of Land Administration seeking orders stating whether the land in question belonged to the Devasthanam. The EO alleged that the RDO then favoured the private parties.
Further, an individual who allegedly encroached 4.33 acres of land belonging to the Simhachalam Temple at Adavivaram moved the Revenue Divisional Officer’s court and Venkateswarlu allegedly gave an order in favour of the private person.
In another case related to illegal occupation of 14 acres of Simhachalam Devasthanam land at Vepagunta in Pendurthi mandal, the temple EO accused the RDO of giving a favourable order to private parties in violation of law.
Quoting the four charges, the Collector issued a showcause notice to Venkateswarlu with a rider that the latter must file a counter within two weeks.
Venkateswarlu defended himself and denied all charges, terming them baseless. “I have done no wrong in issuing the orders. I issued orders after careful examination of the cases from all angles. I am going to submit a comprehensive reply for all the allegations made in the show-cause notice,” the RDO told TNIE.