Land grabbing: Goa Govt to setup inquiry commission

The Goa government will form an inquiry commission headed by a retired judge to deal with the civil aspects of the land grabbing cases and fast track the transfer of land title to the original owner, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said on Tuesday.

In an interview to a local news channel, Sawant said that the process of investigation had started after a common man complained about the land grabbing issues.

“So far 15 persons have been arrested in this connection. Some feel that the accused are out on bail and they are freed, but they will not be. They, along with government officers involved in land grabbing will go behind bars under different sections,” Sawant said.

Around 110 sale deeds are in the category of ‘no man’s land’, as nobody has claimed for it. “A Special Investigation Team under the crime branch is investigating the matter. SIT will file a charge-sheet and while the criminal aspects will be dealt with by court, the inquiry commission will look into the civil aspects,” he stated.

Soon, a retired judge will be appointed as the commissioner. “All cases (No man’s land) will be dealt by commission. If no one claimants come forward, then it will go to the government. People can directly claim their right by producing relevant documents and get back their land. There will be no need to approach civil court,” he said.

He said that the Inquiry commission will deliver judgment within three to four months. “It will be time bound. This decision is in the interest of the people.”

SIT headed by Superintendent of Police (Crime Branch) Nidhin Valsan was formed in July 2022 to entertain complaints from the people in connection with illegal land grabbing and conversion cases.

“The land of Goa and the interest of Goans will be protected at any cost. We have come across some cases of such illegal land transfers, hence we have constituted the team to take swift action in such matters,” the Chief Minister had then said.

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