Thursday, July 11, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

‘Kasba’ hub of fake power of attorney
Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

Patiala, July 10
Dudhan Sadhan, near here, is a sleepy backward “kasba”. Its name usually appears in newspapers during flood season. Now it has gained notoriety for being the hub of a racket under which gangs from Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan have used its sub-tehsil office to register fake power of attorney in hundreds which have been used to sell property worth crores in both states.

The racket was busted following a struggle by Shashi Aggarwal whose 40 bighas in Saharanpur were sold off on the basis of a fake power of attorney obtained in her name from Dudhan Sadhan by two residents of Saharanpur, Iqbal Ahmed and Gulbahar Ahmed. Shashi approached the Saharanpur District Magistrate in May to take up the case with the Punjab Government following which the District Magistrate asked the Patiala Deputy Commissioner to verify the power of attorney on the basis of which the land was sold.

The district administration first ordered a preliminary inquiry which was conducted by Patiala SDM Manjit Singh Narang. The inquiry revealed that the complaint was correct and that a fake power of attorney had been registered in her name. The inquiry officer also found that from March 21 to March 27, as many as 90 power of attorney were registered at the sub-tehsil, all pertaining to people and properties outside Punjab.

A subsequent detailed inquiry conducted recently has revealed that as many as 600 power of attorney were registered at Dudhan Sadhan from April 2001 to April 2002. Interestingly, two advocates — Amik Singh Wasu of Jagadhri and Manvinder Singh of Dera Bassi — and another Jagadhri resident, Praveen Kumar, were signatories to the majority of the power of attorney registered during this period.

Besides this the nambardar of Julkan, Ajmer Singh, identified a majority of persons seeking power of attorney, even though most of them had showed Dudhan Sadhan as their temporary residence and some even gave their Uttar Pradesh addresses. The role of the Naib Tehsildar and joint sub-registrar Hussan Singh was also dubious with the officer signing all power of attorney even though most of them were written in Hindi and those seeking them were not residents of the state.

Sources said that the district administration had sent a DO letter on the case to the Saharanpur Deputy Commissioner and submitted a report in this regard to the government. The Financial Commissioner (Revenue) has marked the case to the Vigilance Department. Patiala Deputy Commissioner Tejvir Singh said he had marked the case to the SSP for the registration of a criminal case yesterday.

Meanwhile, the sources said as a follow-up action, the district administration had made out a case for the dismissal of nambardar Ajmer Singh. They also said Naib-Tehsildar Hussan Singh had been shifted out of the sub-tehsil.

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