Cong at root of land dispute in Sonbhadra: Yogi 

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath meets the members of the aggrieved families of the in Sonbhadra last month (PTI File Photo)

In an apparent damage control exercise, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Sunday shunted out the district magistrate and police chief of Sonbhadra, where ten tribal people had been killed over a land dispute last month.

Adityanath, while addressing a press conference here, said that the Congress was at the root of the land dispute, which started in 1952, in connivance with then revenue officials in the district.

Earlier, a three-member committee set-up to probe the incident, had submitted its one thousand page report to the chief minister.

"The action has been taken on the basis of the report," he said.

Around half a dozen other officials, including the SDM, CO and assistant registrar, had also been suspended and orders were issued to lodge FIRs against them, the chief minister said.

"The officials, who had connived with the Congress leaders in 1952, will also be prosecuted if they are alive," he added. 

Adityanath claimed that two Congress leaders had formed societies and bought 1,300 bigha (a unit of land) land at Umbha village, where the carnage had taken place, in 1952.

The land was transferred to two individuals in 1989, who started selling it in 2017.

"The selling gave rise to the dispute," he said.

Sources said that two former IAS officers had got the land transferred in the names of their wives. The government has decided to lodge a case against the wives too.

Ten tribal people were killed and dozens others injured in a clash between the tribal people and the goons of the 'pradhan' (panchayat chief) of Umbhi village Yagyadutt Bhurtia, who tried to take possession of around 200 'bighas' there.

The tribal people, who had been tilling the land for the past several years, resisted the attempt, following which the 'pradhan' and his goons, who were armed with guns, opened fire at the tribal people killing ten.

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