Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Dec 27:
The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the State Crime Branch (CB) on Friday arrested three persons
from the Mancheswar area on the charge of fraudulently possessing and selling out 51.570 acres of government land under Bhubaneswar Teshil to private parties.
The three accused – Narayan Chandra Pradhan (78), Arun Kumar Bhanja (48) and Bansidhar Pradhan (54) – were booked under section 467, 468, 470, 471, 120 (B) of IPC and were forwarded to the local court today, CB DIG Rajesh Kumar said.
According to Kumar, the General Administration (GA) Department, in July 3 this year, had handed over to the CB the case relating to the fraudulent deal involving 51.57 acres of Government land in Rokata, Pandara, Gadakana and Mancheswar mouzas under Bhubaneswar Teshil, worth more than Rs 150 crore.
During our investigation, we found that Keshab Chandra Mohapatra and Uday Nanda (who are now dead) came to possess the land in 1961 by producing forged documents before revenue officials. After their death, Narayan and Arun, the two accused secured possession over the land, again by producing fake documents and even sold out part of it,” the DIG said.
Later the government took possession of part of the land through a land re-settlement process in 1974. Those who lost their land filed challenged the GA department’s decision in a local court here.
The case alerted the GA department, which made a discreet inquiry and found that the land indeed belonged to the government. It was then that the department decided to hand over the case for investigation to the CB in July this year.
Kumar said Bansidhar, a middleman, was engaged in selling out the government land in possession of the other two accused Narayana and Arun.
“After verifying all documents given to us by the GA Department, we traced irregularities in the possession of the land and arrested the three accused today. Further investigation is on to nab the government officials who were involved in facilitating the land scam,” added the DIG.