Srinagar: A congress minister in Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Council is in dock after the Legislative council called for investigation against him into the allegations of forest land grab.
The accused is a strong congress man who currently heads Public Health Engineering portfolio in coalition government of Congress and National Conference. The state legislative council had ordered to form a house committee to look into the Taj’s alleged land grab.
“There is a strong prima facie case that warrants a thorough and detailed investigation by a committee of this house,” Chairman Amrit Malhotra said in a three –page order.
The house committee will be headed by Murtaza Khan of opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Syed Muhammad Rafiq Shah, Khalid Najeeb Suharwardy and Bashir Ahmed Magray as its members.
The development was triggered following a reply to a answer to a question that whether there is any land under illegal occupation of any sitting minister in the state. The government had replied in negative. However Syed Rafiq Shah contested the claims of the government and presented documents involving Taj in forest land grab in South Kashmir’s Shopian area. The Minster however had contested the claims and even went to the extent of resigning from post if allegations are proved right.
Zahid Maqbool is a freelance journalist based in Srinagar.