Look into podi irregularities, panel urges CJ

Look into podi irregularities, panel urges CJ

The anti-land-grab action committee has written to the acting Chief Justice Subhro Kamal Mukherjee requesting him to take a suo moto cognizance of the CD containing details of podi irregularities to the tune of Rs 100 crore by former Deputy Director of Land Records Raja Naik.

The convener of the committee A T Ramaswamy released the letter written to the acting Chief Justice, which mentioned about the CD in possession of High Court judge Justice Ram Mohan Reddy. Justice Reddy had told Additional Advocate General A S Ponnanna in the open court that some members of the public had handed over a CD containing details of irregularities by the former Deputy Director of Land Records.

“After the corruption in the institution of Lokayukta was exposed, faith of the public in the government and other investigative agencies has taken a beating. The very fact that the CD was handed over directly to a sitting judge strengthens this aspect. The failure on the part of the government to act on the reports of V Ponnuraj, the then commissioner of Land Records in 2012, and also on the Upalokayukta report in 2013 against Raja Naik has made the members of the public to hand over the CD directly to judge reposing extreme faith in the judiciary and expecting that the matter would not be buried,“ the letter stated.

 Interestingly, Raja Naik’s phone number had featured in the Call Details Record of V Bhaskar alias ‘420’ Bhaskar, one of the prime accused in the Lokayukta corruption cases. Naik was in touch with Bhaskar and records show that on February 5, 2015, Bhaskar had made seven calls to Naik on his mobile phone number.

Ramaswamy said that the CD might throw more details on the land-grabbing cases. “Our committee has been consistently fighting against land grabbing in the State and is very much concerned about the content of the CD as it is bound to throw more light on the land grabbing by powerful in connivance with the officials. We have requested the acting Chief Justice to take suo motu cognizance of this important matter and order an investigation into the irregularities mentioned in the said CD. If, for any reason, a suo motu action is not possible we request that the CD be handed over to the government with a direction to get it properly investigated.”   

Ramaswamy also demanded the competent authority to set up special court for land grab cases. “There was an order for setting up of special courts in October 2015. However, even three months after the order, action has not been taken to establish the courts to try land-grabbing cases,” he said.