J&K Congress calls for independent commission to probe assets of former ministers, legislators

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Jammu, Aug 2 (PTI) Expressing strong resentment over 'criminal silence' of the government on the serious allegations of land grabbing involving some politicians, the J&K Congress on Sunday demanded setting up of an independent commission to probe properties and assets of all former ministers and legislators of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Jammu and Kashmir administration has removed encroachments of nine lakh kanals of land by deleting the entries in the revenue records but failed to remove it on the ground.

JKPCC Chief Spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said, 'The UT administration should constitute a high-level independent commission to investigate all such land deals and assets of former ministers and legislators including big sharks in the administration.' Taking a dig at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), he said that one of the cited reasons for abrogation of special status was to check corruption and put the big sharks behind bars but that has not been the case after nearly one year.

Several top leaders, especially former ministers, are being linked to matters regarding illegal acquiring of huge chunks of land worth crores of rupees that are disproportionate to known sources of their income, Sharma claimed.

'While none of the big sharks have been booked, it is necessary that all such deals and allegations are thoroughly investigated and brought to light,' he said.

Sharma said people have the right to know the truth about all such serious allegations with reports in the media and in the public domain against those who they had voted to power.

He said, 'Only a fair investigation under an independent commission can bring out truth in public and law should take its own course in every case against any one found guilty irrespective of any party or other affiliations'.

He said some top bureaucrats and officers too have acquired huge wealth through illegal means and have palatial bungalows and other properties which should be investigated and appropriate action should follow in a time-bound manner.

He quoted the famous proverb that 'Caesar's wife must be above suspicion' and said those who held high positions in the government or administration must maintain integrity and show transparency.

People are rapidly losing faith in their representatives and the bureaucracy due to the series of allegations against many of them, which is not good and it is essential to establish and maintain the trust of the people, the Congress leader said.

Corruption goes unabated with the people being fleeced in the offices for their genuine works, he claimed.

'There is no deterrence of any sort while in the past there used to be some window of airing grievances,' he added. PTI AB HDA