Hubli: Activist SR Hiremath has alleged that the authorities concerned are dilly-dallying action against former Union minister SM Krishna’s two relatives who are accused of land encroachment.
At a press conference in Hubli on Sunday, the founder-president of National Committee for Protection of Natural Resources (NCPNR) produced documents to support his claim. He said the tahasildar of Bangalore East taluk had issued an eviction order against Krishna’s close relatives Raja Bagmane and VG Sidhharth.
He said that according to a complaint filed by the Bangalore Metropolitan Task Force, the two have encroached 32.16 acres near Kaggadasapurakere and 3.26 acres near Benniganahallikere. He said their company, Bagmane Developers, erected high-rises on the bank of Byrasandra Kelaginakere and sold them to IT companies like Cognizant and Texas Instruments.
He alleged that dereliction of duty on the part of revenue department officers, Land Development Authority (LDA) and its CEO Ravi Ralph, an IFS officer, abetted encroachment. Suspecting collusion of government officers and the land grabbers, Hiremath sought a thorough investigation into the case.
He said the LDA woke up from its slumber a year and a half after the Karnataka high court issued an order in this regard. He said the HC’s order dated November 16, 2011, could spur the LDA into acting only after 18 months, making it issue a show-cause notice. Here too, Hiremath alleged, the LDA passed much of the blame to the revenue department. He said that after prolonged discussion and review, Bangalore East tahasildar issued an eviction order on May 20 this year. But again, he underlined, no action was taken on the order.
The NCPNR chairperson recalled chief minister Siddaramaiah’s commitment to recover all encroached land and urged him to follow his words with action. He said the chief minister should act crack down on the encroachers regardless of their political connections.