Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Dec 22:
The Odisha government, which has taken credit for the announcement to cancel all ‘illegal’ plots and houses allotted under discretionary quota (DQ), is now in a quandary over how to carry out its decsion.
Neither the ministers nor the concerned officials have any idea on this.
Going by the opinion of a legal expert, the state government will find it extremely difficult to cancel the allotments.
“It would be impossible for the government to implement the decision of the State Cabinet in this regard. The government, which has taken the decision without seeking legal opinion, will subsequently find itself entangled in legal complications,” said an official.
A thorough review of the task force report and the cabinet decision make it clear that the state government does not want cancellation of any allotted plot or house.
On the other hand, the government, in a desperate bid to find an escape route, has now put the ball in the court of the Law department to decide on the modalities of implementation of the cancellation process while the fact remains that it had not consulted the department prior to the Cabinet decision in this regard.
Besides, the decision of the state government to cancel the allotment of plots and houses of those who had taken more than one plot and house through false affidavits, is seen as a gimmick.
While the task force, in its report, has recommended the government to take legal action against these offenders, the latter has decided to take action against them after conducting a fresh Vigilance probe, which clearly indicates that the government is keen to protect these ‘influential’ offenders.
It is surprising to note that most of the ministers were not aware of the decison to be taken at the cabinet meeting. While Revenue and Disaster Management minister Bijayshree Routray and Panchayati Raj minister Arun Sahu were on tour to their respective constituencies on December 17, they were informed over telephone about the cabinet meeting scheduled the next day. They came to know about the topic of discussion only after they arrived at the meeting.
Reliable sources said about 6-7 ministers with a group influential persons, who have been allotted plots and land under DQ, had assembled in the house of a senior minister on Saturday night. The meeting discussed the purpose of the cabinet meeting in this matter and on whose advice the decision was taken.
Besides, these ministers could not make out the ambiguous statement of the party spokesperson Pratap Jena assuring the allottees not to panic about the decision of the government.