YEIDA au­dit shows ac­quired land was pur­chased again

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - - HTMETRO - Vinod Ra­jput vinod.ra­


GREATER NOIDA : The Ya­muna Ex­press­way In­dus­trial De­vel­op­ment Author­ity (YEIDA) on Wed­nes­day said it had un­earthed a ‘huge’ scam in­volv­ing of­fi­cials who had pur­chased al­ready ac­quired agri­cul­tural land from farm­ers, caus­ing loss to the state ex­che­quer.

The ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties were re­vealed in the land au­dit or­dered by Ut­tar Pradesh Chief Min­is­ter Yogi Adityanath to find anom­alies in land ac­qui­si­tion and es­tab­lish if the ac­quired land is with the gov­ern­ment or land grab­bers. YEIDA, how­ever, did not share the amount of losses or the land in­volved in the scam.

“We have ad­e­quate ev­i­dence to prove that some of­fi­cials, hand in glove with the farm­ers, paid for the al­ready ac­quired land. Once the re­port will be fi­nalised, we will be able to tell the ex­act amount of land, which was pur­chased twice,” said Amar­nath Upad­hyay, ad­di­tional chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of the YEIDA.

YEIDA is ex­pected to com­plete the land au­dit by next month and ta­ble the re­port be­fore UP in­dus­try min­is­ter Satish Ma­hana.

Ma­hana, on Oc­to­ber 6, 2017, had asked the author­ity to check how much land it had in dif­fer­ent cat­e­gories, how much was al­ready al­lot­ted and the size of the land that can be pro­vided to in­vestors in Noida, Greater Noida and Ya­muna Ex­press­way ar­eas. The dead­line for com­plet­ing the land au­dit was De­cem­ber 21, but YEIDA is yet to fin­ish the au­dit.

Ex­plain­ing the de­lay, Upad­hyay said, “The job re­quires time be­cause we have to go into the de­tails of each land par­cel, which is sus­pected to be grabbed or seems dis­puted. Dur­ing the au­dit, we have come across sev­eral cases, in which the ac­quired land was pur­chased again from the farm­ers.”

“It means that the Gau­tam Budh Na­gar ad­min­is­tra­tion first fol­lowed due pro­ce­dure in ac­quir­ing land. Then, it once again bought the same land through di­rect registry from the farm­ers,” said Upad­hyay.

“We have cross-checked many a time to de­ter­mine whether the same agri­cul­ture land has been bought from farm­ers twice or not. We have now con­firmed the in­volve­ment of some author­ity of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing some Tehsil­dar, Lekh­pal and clerks. The YEIDA had to bear huge losses. Once the re­port is fi­nalised, we will ini­ti­ate ac­tion against the guilty of­fi­cials,” said Upad­hyay.

The Ut­tar Pradesh gov­ern­ment had es­tab­lished Ya­muna author­ity in 2002 to en­cour­age in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ment and no­ti­fied 2.5 lakh hectares of land along the 165-km Ya­muna Ex­press­way.

The Ya­muna Ex­press­way in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ment author­ity had so far ac­quired 12,000 hectares of agri­cul­tural land along the ex­press­way which con­nects Greater Noida with Agra. How­ever, most of this land is still in the pos­ses­sion of the farm­ers who had been de­mand­ing higher com­pen­sa­tion. The YEIDA has al­ready dis­trib­uted R1,000 crore as com­pen­sa­tion and yet to dis­trib­ute R4,000 crore.

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