SDO had to sanction under Section 171 ( 1) Collector serves showcause notice to SDO Dr Varadmurthi Mishra

Indore: SDO Dr Varadmurthi Mishra is all set to face the music as the high- power committee found him guilty of sanctioning land diversion of Swadeshi Mill under a wrong section.

Mishra had sanctioned diversion of 18 hectare land of Swadeshi Mill under Section 59. The committee said that the SDO should have granted sanction under Section 171( 10). Taking a prompt action over the report, District Collector Aakash Tripathi served a show- cause notice to Dr Mishra on Monday evening, asking him to reply within 3 days. In a fast development on Monday evening, ADM Ravindra Singh- led twomember panel submitted its report to the Collector. Tripathi said that the committee had found Dr Mishra guilty as he granted sanction under section 59 instead of under the section 172( 1).

Following suggestion of the committee and the request of the SDO himself for review of the permission, the collector had altered the permission. Traipathi further said that a show cause notice had been served on SDO on Monday evening asking him to explain the reason under what circumstances, he granted the sanction under Section 59 instead of 172 ( 2).

The SDO has also been asked to give reply in three days. Highly placed sources said that Dr Mishra deliberately granted sanction under Section 59, while Sophia Real Estate itself sought the permission of diversion under Section 172( 1). Sources further said that though the SDO had asked the Superintendent of Land Records ( SLR) to give title track record of the former textile mill. SLR had mentioned that since 1925- 26 to 2007- 08, the land owner was IMC. On the other hand the SDO fixed the tax. Sources said this move had also affected state exchequer.

It is notable that the SDO had granted sanction on October 28 last year and due to Assembly elections the whole administrative machinery was busy in poll prepration. The issue came to fore on January 10, after that the Collector constituted a probe panel against diversion of land from industrial purpose to residential granted by the SDO.

What Dr Mishra did

Dr Mishra granted permission under Section 59, which empowers the SDO to take decision about the land diversion on his own. It’s not mandatory for him to seek NOC from any concerned government agencies.

Hence, the title suit filed by the IMC in Indore bench of High Court, could not be surfaced. Exercising the power of 59, the SDO fixed the tax too.

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