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Karnataka CM Gowda assures probe in Rs two lakh crore Wakf land scam

Bangalore , Tue, 27 Mar 2012 ANI

Bangalore, Mar 27 (ANI): The Karnataka Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda on Tuesday assured of thorough probe into the two lakh crore rupees Wakf land scam in the state.

"As per the inquiry, property of the Wakf Board, worth two trillion rupees has been usurped. We will study the report in depth and on our part we will act in right earnest. And we will ensure, not even an inch of the Wakf land will be misused. Those responsible for abuse of their powers, be they any vested interests or any high and mighty, none of them would be spared. Restoration of the usurped property is our government's responsibility and soon, the action taken would be known to the people," said Gowda.

Karnataka State Minority Commission unearthed usurping of lands belonging to Wakf Board, an exclusive body constituted to safeguard interests of Muslims such as mosques, prayer grounds, cemeteries, schools and orphanages.

A report on the findings about the land scam was released in the presence of the Chief Minister Gowda in Bangalore on Tuesday.

The 7,500-page report submitted by the state's Minorities Commission headed by Anwar Manippady to chief minister Gowda has indicted numerous state politicians, members of the Wakf Board along with the real estate mafia in his report.

The Wakf Board looks after properties that can only be used for charitable causes such as schools and hospitals.

Manippady's said that an inquiry revealed the illegal sale of around 3,786 acres of land in Bidar district alone.

"This has been done by the people of the community, leaders of the community, businessmen, and middlemen and various other people," he said.

Manippady declined to reveal the names of the politicians involved in the scam.

"No property of Wakf will be shared with anybody or sold or bought or anything. It should be used only for the benefit of the poor Muslims in particular or others in general. (According to the law,) Once Wakf property is always a Wakf property, how can they just do it? It is impossible! Also, it is a contempt of court if they are adhering to some compromise," added Manipaddy.

Congress party leader Roshan Baig slammed Manippady terming him to be eccentric and dubbing the reports as misleading.

"Let the chief minister refer this to the CBI, let the CBI conduct an inquiry. I leave to the chief minister to conduct any kind of inquiry, as it seems fit. I think this is a figment of imagination, I think the chairman of the Minorities Commission is a mental case," he said.

Legislator Tanvir Seth also joined the chorus and said that the figures of the scam have been blown out of proportions.

"I think it is a magnified figure and it is not right. But at the same time, I would rather not deny that encroachments have not happened not form the people whom he has accused of," said Tanvir Seth.

The scam was highlighted by media outlets after Minority Commission members visited Karnataka's Bidar District in November last year to look into complaints of illegal encroachment. (ANI)

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