Ibobi blasts Centre on sports univ U-turn

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IbobiOkram Ibobi Singh has blamed the Centre for not informing the state on time that the Yaithibi Loukon is a low lying area and that the National Sports University cannot be constructed at the site.

Speaking to reporters at his office conference Ibobi Singh said that the land was scrutinized by a central team and they could have cleared their doubts then, instead of making a last minute change.

He stated that there is no longer any litigation regarding the land at Yaithibi at present as the litigants have withdrawn their case recently. However, he failed to clarify on the agitation which occurred at Sora yesterday in which 22 residents of the village were injured in police crackdown.

“They have no real reason to protest, we cannot take anything by force,” was the reply of the CM. According to the Yaithibi JAC, there are at least 165 land owners which still have not sold their land to the state government. This was also stated by Vijay Goel, minister of State (Independent Charge) YAS, at BJP office on Friday as one of the main reasons for shifting the sports university site.

New developments also cropped up regarding the land acquisition, according to Ibobi Singh, the total land handed over was 336.93 acres , the clearance certificate given by sub-registrar of Thoubal, namely A Subol Singh had mentioned that 273.16 was purchased directly from landowners while another 63.77 acres was state khas land (as per documents given at the press meet).

However, the total area of land acquired was written as 366.93 instead of 336.93. This was pointed out to the chief minister by IFP. Ibobi admitted there might have been a mistake but MLA of Wangjing Tentha, P Brojen had clarified that the state government had acquired extra land. He divulged that the state had in reality acquired 390 acres and not 336.93. This answer did not absolve the false non-encumbrance certificate, but rather led to the fact that the state government had acquired another extra 54 acres which was not divulged to the media nor to the Centre authorities before.

However, at the end, MLA P Brojen agreed that the error was tell-tale at the non-encumbrance certificate as figured did not add up.

It was also put up to Ibobi Singh by IFP, that the state Assembly had passed the Manipur Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland in 2014 with the objective of promoting growth in the agricultural sector, but the Yaithibi Loukon itself is a paddy land and the state government would be going against an Act set up by the state itself. Ibobi clarified that a permit can be taken from the state government, “An exemption clause must be there,” he added.

Ibobi Singh also pointed out the state government has no hand in giving out contract works for construction of the university and it was left to the purview of the concerned central authorities. It may be mentioned that IFP had already reported that touts with construction plans details are taking money from local contractors with the promise that the construction work will be given to them.

IFP also questioned that the new patta of the 273.16 includes new names which are supposedly close to the government, and that the old pattadars are not listed. It may be mentioned that one person has brought tens of acres in his name and like-wise for many others. MLA P Brojen clarified that the land was purchased directly from the original landowners by the new ones, the sum of Rs 3 lacs per sangam  was paid by them and later, the state government compensated the new owners. This turned out to be the direct purchase system of the government.

Source: Imphal Free Press

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