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Kerala HC: Detailed Probe Needed in Kottakambur Land Grab

The Kerala High Court on Friday held that a fruitful investigation was needed in the case related to illegal possession of land.

Published: 05th December 2015 04:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 05th December 2015 04:45 AM   |  A+A-

KOCHI: The Kerala High Court on Friday held that a fruitful investigation was needed in the case related to illegal possession of land  by private individuals, including Idukki MP Joice George, in the Kottakambur village.

The court observed that in the case under reference, poor persons belong to the lower strata of society and members of the scheduled caste community were deliberately defrauded.

Justice B Kemal Pasha issued the order on a petition filed by Mukesh of Udumbanchola in Idukki, seeking a CBI probe into the case. The petitioner pointed out that the lands were grabbed from members of the scheduled caste community in the Kottakambur and Vattavada villages in the Devilkulam taluk by certain persons.According to the petitioner, no impartial investigation was conducted as the persons involved in the crime were having political clout, especially because one of the accused is a sitting MP.

Director General of Prosecution T Asaf Ali submitted that the case was being probed by the Munnar Assistant Superintendent of police. The court suggested that the ASP be allowed to continue with the investigation in a fruitful manner.

“Things should be done not in paper alone, but the investigating officer should see that the culprits are booked. The Idukki District police chief shall supervise the investigation,” held the court.

The court also directed the investigating officer to file monthly status reports before it. The first report should be filed on January, 5, 2015, explaining what has been done on the matter and the action taken by the police.

The investigating officer should look into the report by the District Collector.  The report clearly reveals that the lands were shown as properties in the possession of members of the schedule caste community, even in the name of persons aged five and six. Applications were clandestinely filed for obtaining ‘patta’, and within no time final decision was taken and ‘pattas’ were issued. Immediately after availing the pattas, the agents who had grabbed land obtained ‘power of attorneys’ from the illiterate persons.

On the basis of such power of attorneys, the officials concerned managed to execute sale deeds in favour of the persons who had  grabbed the lands, on completion of the third year of the assignment.The court observed that even a person of commonsense could not rule out exploitation and fraud in the matter.  The petitioner pointed out that no proper investigation was happening in the case. The DGP submitted that he himself was not satisfied with the status report of the investigation team.  The complaint filed by the petitioner stated that Joice George and his family members, with a dishonest intention, deceived persons belonging to the scheduled caste community and grabbed large parcels of land by executing sale deeds.



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