Home Dehradun Land Mafia attempts to grab land owned by  late Sadhvi in Guchupani

Land Mafia attempts to grab land owned by  late Sadhvi in Guchupani

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By Arun Pratap Singh
Dehradun, 8 Jun: Dehradun and Uttarakhand continue to make headlines in connection with incidents involving land mafia and the land grabbing by the land mafia. In spite of the claimed strictness of the police and the administration, land mafias in Uttarakhand are not desisting from their activities. The land mafia has become so fearless that forgery of documents is undertaken and land deeds are registered with the help of forged documents. Involvement of revenue officials can’t be ruled out in most such cases though, and the administration has been found to be lacking as far as taking action against government officials is concerned. One such incident that has surfaced recently relates to Guchupani village. The land mafia entered into gift deed and then the sale deed on the basis of forged documents. In this case, the land belonging to a late Sadhvi was transferred to one person in form of a gift deed and then sold out to a third party. In this case, Binda Giri, the Sadhvi was wrongly shown as alive at the time of gift deed and then this land was sold out. The land mafia in this case was selling the land in pieces (plots). The forgery was revealed during an inquiry ordered by District Magistrate Sonika.
A group of people including the President of Ex Servicemen Welfare Committee of village Anarwala and villagers from Guchupani, Johri, Anarwala and Chandrauti Village had met District Magistrate of Dehradun Sonika on 20 May during the Janta Darbar and registered their complaint before the DM in this regard. They had informed the District Magistrate that there is an ancient water source in Guchhupani, which the villagers have been using as drinking water for years. They further informed that there was a garden above this water source on a land owned by a woman sanyasi Binda Giri and a temple and an ashram. However after her death, no one was living there and the garden and the temple complex had turned into ruins, However, this land was being eyed by the land mafia and they set fire to the fruit trees planted in this garden and started selling small plots from this piece of land.
Taking cognisance of the complaint, the DM directed Tehsildar Sadar Mohammad Shadab to investigate. Investigation by Tehsildar Sadar Mohammad Shadab revealed that the land is part of Revenue Village Chandauti. Remains of forest fire and bush cutting including small trees have been found on the spot. He also noted that the market value of the land is at least Rs 20-25 crore.
The investigation has also revealed that this land of about four bighas belonged to late Sanyasini Binda Giri who was a disciple of late Laxman Giri in the revenue records. This land has been in the name of Binda Giri continuously since 1953. However, on 25 May 2022, in the office of Sub-Registrar II Dehradun a gift deed was registered under which Binda Giri, resident of 65 C Kankhal district Haridwar made a gift deed to one Satish Kumar Gupta, resident of Vijaypur Hathibarkala Nayagaon district Dehradun. The gift deed carries names of Saurabh Sonkar and Sanjay Thapa as witnesses. Later a mutation was also done of gift deed, in April 2023 and the land was transferred to Satish Gupta.
What raised the suspicion of the investigating officers was the fact that in the land records of 1953, the age of Binda Giri was depicted as 18 years. This made the present age of Binda Giri to be above 90 years. This led to verification of Aadhaar Card of Binda Giri. During the investigation, the Aadhaar Card was found to be fake and the number was also found to be fake. Even the given address (of Kankhal in district Haridwar) of Binda Giri as mentioned in Aadhaar Card was found to be non- existing. A hearing was held in this regard by summoning the mutation file in the court of Tehsildar Dehradun. During the hearing, the person Satish Kumar Gupta in whose name the gift deed was registered claimed that Binda Giri is a man whereas, all facts point out that she was a lady, indicating that the Gift Deed itself is fake and an attempt to usurp the land worth several crores. Detailed investigation has revealed that Binda Giri had died in the eighties itself and since she did not have a family and the death remained unclaimed, the land ought to have been naturally vested in the state government. This did not happen and taking advantage of this fact, the land mafia forged land documents and managed not only to get the gift deed registered but also the mutation done. Allegedly a fake person was presented before the Sub Registrar for this.
In this case, District Magistrate Sonika said that after investigation, the mutation has been cancelled. The sub-registrar has been instructed to immediately register an FIR against all the persons involved including the land mafia and the person who made the fake Aadhaar card. Along with this, a report has been sent to SDM Sadar Dehradun for vesting the land in the state government. There is also a possibility of similar other such cases in Tehsil Dehradun. Therefore, all the Patwaris have been instructed to investigate the Khataunis and submit a report regarding vesting such lands in the state government.