Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], Aug 20 (ANI): Alleging there is a scam in the purchase of marshlands and low lying land at "feigned prices" for constructing houses for the poor, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader N Chandrababu Naidu has written to Andhra Pradesh Chief Secretary urging him to conduct an inquiry into the same.
The former chief minister said that he was disheartened by the government acquiring the land belonging to the poor, and downtrodden sections of the society in the name of housing sites for the poor and further said that it has now ventured into buying marshland, wetland, low lying land, mangroves or other forest lands which is not suitable for housing in an illegal manner.
"I would particularly like to bring to your notice about approximately 600 acres of marshland acquired by the Government in the name of housing sites for poor in Burugupudi Village, Korukonda Mandal in Rajanagaram Assembly constituency in East Godavari District. The land was
acquired at a feigned cost of Rs. 45 lakhs per acre amounting to a total of Rs 270 crore," the letter read.
He further said that raising the level of the land by filling the marshland with soil would cost another Rs 250 crores.
"Thus, the Government has unleashed a scam to the tune of about Rs 500 crores in the name of housing sites for the poor," he alleged.
Naidu said that the acquisition of marshland is also antithetical to the environmental laws as per the law.
He further alleged that a new form of corruption is taking place in which "the ruling-YSRCP leaders in connivance with some local officials
are selecting land, particularly with little or no market value with an intention to swindle money. These YSRCP leaders, in turn, approach the landowners and get the land registered for a higher value while paying the market price to the landowners."
"Later as per the Andhra Pradesh Right to Fair Compensation and
Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, the Government, in turn, is acquiring the land from these YSRCP leaders at a higher cost. Also, money is being taken from the landowners in the form of share for fetching a higher price for their low valued land either in the form of cash or bank transfer," he added.
He said that using the aforementioned modus operandi corruption is taking place across the state, and gave the examples of Tenali, Vinukonda, Kavali, Palacole, Pendurty, Chowdavaram, Addanki and Penamaluru among other assembly constituencies.
Naidu said that a proper investigation will not only reveal more such instances of corruption but will also end up saving the "cash-strapped" state government a lot of money. (ANI)