Deviation from procedures on defence land unacceptable: Antony
New Delhi: Against the backdrop of recent land scams such as Sukna, Defence Minister AK Antony has warned officials against any "incident of omission or commission" in handling military land in the country.
"There should be no incident of omission or commission with regard to defence land. Procedures should be followed scrupulously and deviations would be totally unacceptable," he said here yesterday while reviewing the functioning of the defence estates department.
Several scams involving defence land have come to the surface including the ones in Sukna, Adarsh, Kandivali and Mumbai in last few years.
After the scams came to light, the Defence Ministry took several measures to streamline the management of defence land.
The meeting was also informed by Directorate General of Defence Estates (DGDE) Ravi Kant Chopra that survey of Pokharan and Mahajan field firing ranges is under the process.
The survey is being done against the backdrop of "massive encroachments" over the land of these firing ranges in Rajasthan, Defence Ministry sources said.
At the meeting, Antony said, "Land is limited but a precious natural resource which should be utilised optimally.
"The Minister also expressed concern over the deteriorating conditions in cantonment areas due to financial constraints faced by the cantonments," they said.
The Defence Ministry has also started a project called Raksha Bhoomi to digitise the records of 17 lakh acres of land available with it.