Dhar (Madhya Pradesh): A local court, on Monday, sent 14 accused, including five women, involved in the infamous Rs 200-crore St Teresa School land scam case to jail.
The scam, which was unearthed recently, has become the talk of town as many have started questioning the manner of functioning of both the administration and the local police as even after the first arrest in the case about nine days ago, as many as 15 accused in the case, including main conspirator Sudhir Jain, are still evading the police dragnet.
On Monday, the police remand of Vivek Tiwari, Sudhir Das and Yogesh Agrawal was over and they were sent to jail till December 11. The local police claimed that investigations are still on in the matter and all the accused would be put behind the bars soon.
Raising questions over the administration's functioning in the town, many have questioned why no government official or employee was made accused in the case even after the land diversion permission, or building construction permission, or no-objection certificate given by the administration in the case earlier. Many also questioned why the then administrative official did not ask for the land records before allowing land diversion and granting building permission.
Sudhir Das got this land registered from tribals and Christians. So, how did he mange this? Here, in Dhar district, except for Badnawar, no one can buy tribal land as Section 165 (6) of the MP Land Revenue Code, 1959, is in effect here in the district. Under this Code, no person who is not a tribal will be allowed to acquire land without the permission of a revenue officer not below the rank of collector. If that happens, the reasons have to be recorded in writing.
Besides, people also questioned police action in the case, asking how the police could make buyers and their family members accused in the case, but show lenience to the family members of Yogesh Agrawal. When contacted, Dhar superintendent of police Aditya Pratap Singh said investigations in the case were on and the police would not spare any accused in the case.
District collector Pankaj Jain also had the same answer when asked about involvement of others in the case.
About the scam
* 3.074 hectare donated by then Maharaj Anand Rao Panwar to the Canadian Presbyterian Mission Committee Church Council for constructing a hospital and doctorsí residence in 1895.
* The land has been disputed for years as the land mafia had been selling portions of the land using forged documents.
* BJP MLA Neena Verma has raised the issue in the state Assembly.