India may not be a banana republic but Jammu and Kashmir is no doubt a banana state looking at the manner in which bureaucrats and officials give two hoots to rule of law and cater to their own whims and fancies and those of their political masters. They do this knowing that no one is going to take cognizance of their acts of omissions and commissions and that even if an inquiry is ordered it is going to be scuttled by a friendly officer or minister.
In the latest instance of a massive fraud being perpetrated in the Jammu Development Authority it has been revealed that not only the JDA is incapable of removing illegal encroachments but its previous vice chairman Muhammad Aslam Qureshi also went on an illegal allotment spree benefiting the powerful and mighty. Sources revealed that 295 residential and commercial plots belonging to JDA have been wrongfully allotted to politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen in complete violation of the rules and regulations. Although the government has ordered that an FIR be lodged against the former official but it is unlikely that this is going to change the ground situation. Whatever has been allotted has been appropriated by the criminal classes whose only goal is to get rich, and powerful by misusing the government property, forest lands, and real estate. For this purpose the officials use
every trick in the trade but in case they are asked to help someone or support a noble cause then all their discretionary power just vanishes in thin air.
Like all development authorities in the countries such as DDA, the JDA is also utterly corrupt and beyond redemption. What is more shocking that that almost 77,000 kanals of revenue land has been transferred to this agency but as per current status it has the possession of only 17,000 kanals. There may have been some mistake in calculation of the land bank but there is no doubt in the minds of the people that large chunks of public land has
been misappropriated by the powerful politicians and bureaucrats at the cost of the common man. The need of the hour for the state government is to order an inquiry, find out the culprits and punish the criminals both inside and outside the government to bring order into the state.
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