Reported by Chinmaya Dehury
Bhubaneswar, Sep 17:
Odisha’s Revenue and disaster management minister Bijayshree Routray today informed that the state government had recovered 76 acres of land at Ghangapatna village on the outskirts of the city, which had been grabbed by some politicians and bureaucrats.
“My department has recovered the 76 acres land in Ghangapatna area that includes seven acres of Nivriti Export Private Limited and five acres of Gokarneswar Charitable Trust,” said the minister.
The minister, however, refrained from naming others, who have encroached land in the area.
Nivriti Export Private Limited, in which state BJP president KV Singhdeo’s wife Sangeeta Singhdeo (a former MP from Bolangir) and daughter Nivriti are directors, owns seven acres at Ghangapatana.
Gokarneswar Trust, managed by BJD MP Kalpataru Das’ MLA son Pranab Balbantray, had also grabbed land in the locality while a controversial road had been constructed connecting the land. The road constructed on ‘chhota jangal’ was allegedly funded by Panchayati Raj department without taking permission from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) as required under the law.
The BJD government had drawn flak from various quarters, including opposition parties, for the alleged involvement of ruling party leaders in the land scam. The scandal has tarnished the image of BJD and its leader Naveen Patnaik, who took no action against the persons involved though he was aware of the encroachment as far back as 2007.