Govt To Inquire Into Roshni Scheme Bungling

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Mir Farhat

The Legislative Assembly Speaker Kavinder Gupta Saturday directed the government to investigate into the alleged bungling in the Roshni Act after legislators created uproar over the issue, alleging that politicians and bureaucrats have illegally occupied land in the state under the scheme.
The issue was raised during the Question Hour by the Opposition National Conference legislator from Eidgah, Mubarak Gul, who had in a written question sought details of total area of land transferred to beneficiaries in the state under the Act.
Replying to the MLA, Minister for Revenue Basharat Bukhari said 229691 Kanals and 2 Malras of state land have been transferred to 5, 0157 beneficiaries as per the Act.
The minister said that 19,293 Kanals of land have been transferred among 10,328 beneficiaries in Kashmir and 21,0398 Kanals among 39,829 beneficiaries in Jammu region.
He said Rs 54, 21,95,760 revenue has been generated in Kashmir on account of regularization of un-authorised land and Rs 24,25,81,922 in Jammu region under the Act.
However, in their supplementary questions Gul and BJP MLA Rajiv Sasrotia alleged that huge bungling in allotting land under the Act to beneficiaries, especially politicians and bureaucrats.
“When the Roshni Scheme was launched, the then government had claimed that it will generate a revenue of Rs 25,000 crore and the money will be spent on construction of new power projects in the state. But only Rs 74 crore revenue has been generated under it,” Jasrotia said.
“It seems a big fraud. The land has been transferred to influential politicians and bureaucrats. The basic purpose of generating a revenue of Rs 25,000 crore has been defeated. Government should reveal names of politicians and bureaucrats who have benefitted under the Scheme,” he said, adding, “The government is hiding their names.”
Jasroita was supported by other BJP legislators and PDP MLA from Sonawar, Mohammad Ashraf Mir, who questioned the government why the names have not been revealed. The agitated legislators asked when will be the land retrieved from illegal beneficiaries and they demanded a probe into the whole issue.
Replying to the allegations, the minister admitted that scheme was started to generate a revenue of Rs 25,000 crore for the state.
“I was then working in Radio Kashmir when it was said that it will generate a revenue of Rs 25,000 crore and help the state to start new power projects in the state.”
“It has generated a revenue of only Rs 74 crore. There is already a PIL pending at the High Court. Further the House should also give its suggestions for taking corrective measures of into the scheme.”
He assured the House that an inquiry will be done to reveal the facts about the whole scheme.
The minister said the empowered committee has approved conferment of ownership rights for state land measuring 487 kanals of which 327 kanals have been transferred under the Roshni Scheme with the SMC limits in Srinagar. Similarly in Jammu district he said 16825 Kanals have been transferred to 4040 beneficiaries under the Scheme.
He further said that Jammu and Kashmir Land Records Management Agency, a nodal agency of revenue department has outsourced the activities of the project, modernization of land records in the state including digitization of revenue records in a phased manner. (KNS)

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