March 2019 News

CBI Starts Probe Into Srinagar Cantonment Land Grab Case

16 March 2019

New Delhi: The CBI has registered a case of alleged encroachment of defence land worth crores of rupees by hotel owners in the sensitive Badami Bagh cantonment area in Srinagar, officials said on Saturday. The agency has booked the then chief executive officers of the cantonment Ajay Kumar Choudhary and BK Kaul, junior engineer Tariq Ahmad Khanday, Tramboo Joinery Mills owner Muzaffar Rashid Wani, owner of an under-construction hotel Tariq Ahmad Wani and owner of Soloman Heights hotel Muneer Ahmad Bakshi, they said. The agency had registered a preliminary inquiry in the case on November 27, 2018, which revealed that officials of the cantonment board allegedly facilitated the hotel and mill owners in grabbing the land. The inquiry established that Hotel Solomon Heights of Tariq Ahmad Wani and Tramboo Joinery Mills were standing on defence land, the officials said. Their lease deed had expired and further lease deed was executed without the permission of the defence authorities, the officials said. 'The JE concerned and CEOs submitted false report being fully aware about the status of the land and facilitated the accused private persons to obtain permission from the board on the defence land by putting the status of land as private in Tramboo Joinery Mills,' the CBI alleged. The FIR accused Kaul (now retired), Chaudhary and Khandey of entering into criminal conspiracy to facilitate illegal occupants, causing huge loss to the Defence Ministry. It is alleged that land measuring over 11 kanals was given on a 20-year lease by the defence authority to Indraj Sharma from 1954 to 1974. Sharma allegedly leased out the land to one Abdul Majid Bakshi in 1960 on which Hotel Solomon Heights was constructed.