Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, Dec 4:
The Odisha High Court on Wednesday rejected a petition filed by the Odisha Olympic Association (OOA) seeking a stay on the operation of its order issued last week asking the crime branch to probe its affairs and the district administration to take possession of government land encroached upon by it.
The single judge bench of Justice B P Ray declined to grant the stay after hearing the counsels for OOA and the state government.
On November 29, the court had asked the state government to take possession of encroached government land adjoining Barabati Stadium. The property on the land includes a marriage mandap and over a dozen business establishments.
The court had asked the Crime Branch police to investigate the incident.
The OOA had approached the High Court in a miscellaneous petition seeking a stay on immediate operation of its November 29 order.
The state government objected to the petition of OOA, saying the Cuttack district administration had on Sunday taken possession of the encroached land and the properties on it.
The government also informed the High Court that the crime branch of police had already started investigation.
The OOA, which had got 20 acres of government land on lease for construction of Barabati Stadium way back in 1949, subsequently encroached upon two acres of adjacent vacant government land in mid-70s.
However, in 1986 the OOA sub-leased the encroached land and developed various business establishments on it and earned revenue.
The state government had in 2000 filed an eviction case and had challenged the encroachment. But OOA contested it in a civil court and in 2002 and had obtained a favourable decree. The state government then moved the High Court against the judgment of the lower court.