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ACB register case against SMC officer in illegal construction in Srinagar

Srinagar, Dec 8: The Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Tuesday registered a case against the officers of Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) in illegal construction of a restaurant at Rajbagh area of Srinagar, a spokesman of the ACB said this evening.

He said ACB has registered a case FIR No. 26/2020 in Police Station (PS) ACB Srinagar against the officers and officials of Corporation and beneficiaries in illegal construction case.

The case was registered on the basis of a Joint Surprise Check against the officers/ officials of SMC who facilitated the beneficiary in raising illegal construction in blatant violation of the building permission, thereby conferring undue pecuniary advantage upon him and themselves.

He said during the surprise check was conducted by ACB into the allegations that the proprietor of Hatrick Restaurant has constructed the complex at Raj Bagh Srinagar in violation of the building permission order. SMC failed to take any action against the violator.

It was revealed that the competent authority BOCA Srinagar had issued building permission in favour of one Showkat Chowdri, son of Chowdri Abdul Rehim, resident of Rajbagh Srinagar for raising of 2nd floor for residential purpose. However, the proprietor of Hatrick Restaurant in violation of the building permission has raised commercial building which at present is existing on ground up to 3rd storey level.

During the course of investigation it has been established that there is major and blatant violation of building permission granted by SMC Srinagar besides, a violation of 759 square feet in plinth area has been committed by the beneficiary/violator.

It has further revealed the field staff of SMC failed to prevent the raising of said illegal construction by the violator and no action has been taken by Ward Officer and Enforcement Officer of SMC against the violator for more than two weeks who thereby facilitated him to raise the illegal construction during this period.

Consequently, the violator has completed the construction with major violations/ deviations and later on the violator has approached J&K Special Tribunal, Jammu and the Tribunal issued notice to the respondents for filling of objections and called record with the direction to maintain status quo on spot.

It is therefore, evident that wilful delay of more than two weeks and deliberate inaction on the part of Officers/Officials of SMC Srinagar provided ample time and opportunity to the violator for raising illegal construction /commercial structure in blatant contravention of the permission granted by SMC Srinagar.

By acting in this manner, the Officers/Officials of SMC namely Showkat Ahmad Hamdani Ward officer, Bashir Ahmad Shaheen Enforcement Officer and Mohammad Akbar Sofi Chief Enforcement Officer by abuse of their official positions and acting in league with each other and with the beneficiary violator i.e, proprietor of Hatrick Restaurant have wilfully and dishonestly facilitated the beneficiary in raising illegal construction i.e. commercial complex in blatant violation of the building permission, thereby conferring undue pecuniary advantage upon him and themselves.

Accordingly Case FIR No. 26/2020 u/s 5(1) (d) r/w 5(2) J&K P.C. Act Svt-2006 and Section 120-B RPC registered in PS ACB Srinagar. After registration of case search warrant obtained from the Court of Special Judge Anti Corruption Srinagar and searches were conducted at various places in Srinagar and documental evidence recovered which is seized on the spot.


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