Friday, June 02, 2023
Crime & Law

ED arrests former revenue official for fraudulently selling village land in Punjab

PUNJAB NEWS EXPRESS | April 22, 2023 08:34 AM

NEW DELHI: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) said on Friday that it has arrested a person named Varinder Pal Singh Dhoot, a former Naib Tehsildar, in a money-laundering case involving revenue officials and others who allegedly misallocated shares of panchayat land in Seonk village in SAS Nagar, Punjab, to the tune of more than 99 acres in the name of ineligible villagers and outsiders.

The ED had initiated a PMLA case on the basis of an FIR registered by the Punjab Vigilance Bureau under various sections of Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Corruption Act. A charge sheet was also filed by the Vigilance Bureau against Dhoot and others.

"Investigation has revealed that revenue officials, Dhoot and others falsely allotted shares of shamlat land in Seonk village in the name of six villagers. Subsequently, power of attorney was obtained by private property dealers from these villagers and on the basis of that, the property dealers in connivance with revenue officials sold shamlat land to non-eligible villagers and some outsiders," said the ED.

The sale considerations were shared by the property dealers and revenue officials after giving small amounts to the villagers from whom the power of attorney was taken.

During investigation, bank accounts maintained by Dhoot in his and his family members' names were scrutinised and unexplained credits to the tune of more than Rs 15 crore were found including cash credits of around Rs 8 crore.

The investigation revealed that Dhoot had received funds in his relatives' bank accounts from the friends and relatives of the final purchaser and/or beneficial owners of the shamlat land.

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