4 more arrested in agricultural land scam
Last month, MiD DAY broke the story of a shocking scam that involved the usurpation of land earmarked for agricultural purposes.
In a fresh development, the Ulhasnagar Crime Branch has arrested four more for their involvement in the scam. Three of the arrested accused are builders, while one is a lawyer. One of the accused, Razzak Shaikh, allegedly usurped government land and developed a building on it.
On Tuesday, police arrested Shripad Bhosale, Nilesh Chavhan, Razzak Shaikh and Janardan Kalan. Chavhan, Shaikh and Kalan are builders while Bhosale is a lawyer, who allegedly helped the others to prepare fake documents and issued title certificates for them. “We’ve arrested four in the matter. Without conducting proper background check, the lawyer gave a false title certificate for government land. The court has remanded the accused in police custody for three days,” said investigating officer Machhindra Chavhan.
In its story ‘Builder-don-MLA nexus erects 1,500 buildings on agricultural land,’ dated June 20, MiD DAY had exposed the racket in which over 1,500 residential buildings were developed on land strictly earmarked for agricultural purposes, in collusion with village heads.
Certificates were forged to facilitate the unlawful construction. MiD DAY had also exposed that the project was allegedly financed by elements from the underworld with direct links to dons Chhota Rajan and Ravi Pujari.
Shaikh, one of the accused, allegedly developed government land in Nandivli village, with a market value of Rs 1.5 core and then sold 37 flats and earned over Rs 4 crore from the same.
The builders and developers approached land owners in villages — 27 in Dombivli and 13 in Kalyan — and promised that they would enjoy profits from 40 per cent of the flats sold, if they made their plots available for development. The builders also allegedly gave huge payoffs to the gram sarpanch and upsarpanch.