Jubilant at the high court order setting aside land allotments to SEZs in Goa, the SEZ Virodhi Manch (SVM) on Monday demanded the immediate resignation of the GIDC board of directors and conniving bureaucrats “instrumental in the fraudulent land allotments,” or their sacking by the chief minister. The SVM has also demanded that the chief minister launch a judicial inquiry to unearth the land allotment scam.
SVM called for appropriate action against police officers for failing to register an FIR in October 2007 against the GIDC’s board members, despite villagers having documents to substantiate the irregularities in allotments. It also demanded an inquiry based on the CAG 2008 report by the public accounts committee of the legislative assembly as there was “considerable losses to the public exchequer amounting to crores of rupees.”
Additionally, the Manch demanded that the GIDC revert the land acquired by promoters of the SEZs to the villagers and that the latter decide the nature of use of land in their respective gram sabhas.
“The GIDC should frame rules under Section 51 specifying the mode and method of allotment of lands as per the GIDC Act. Preference should be given to small and medium local entrepreneurs for setting up micro industries in the interest of self employment,” said a SVM press release.
SVM noted that the learned judges of the high court have quashed the allotments of lands to the promoters of SEZs namely, Meditab Specialities at Kerim, Peninsula Pharma at Sancoale and Raheja Corporation, Paradigm Logistics, Inox Mercantile, Planetview Mercantile and Maxgrowe Finlease at Verna and Loutolim. Observing that the high court passed strictures against the Goa Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC) Board for allotting approximately 39 lakh sq m “illegally and in undue haste”, SVM attributed the success to their legal team.