CHANDRAPUR: District collector Vinay Gowda GC has faced the wrath of NCST for not personally appearing at all after being summoned twice and instead sending it to the Deputy Collector. The NSCT has already issued an order to the Director General of Police, Maharashtra, Rajnish Seth, to arrest Gowda and produce him before the commission on March 2.
Government Patwari Vinod Khobragade had also filed a complaint in the NSCT. It is also alleged that the government had allotted about 63.62 hectares of land to tribals of Kusambi village of Jiwti taluka along with another government land for limestone mining 40 years ago.
They have also alleged that Manikghar Cement (now UltraTech Cement) has been allotted land without the consent of the tribals or without giving them any compensation in any way.
Vinod Khobragade has also said in this regard that the Commission had sent a notice to the then Collector Ajay Gulhane on September 29, 2022, asking him to submit a report in this regard within about 15 days. However, Vinod Khobragade has also alleged that he has completely failed to submit the report to the commission.
The Commission has again sent a notice on the date of January 2 asking the present Collector Vinay Gowda to submit a report on the matter within about 15 days. Vinod Khobragade has also alleged that Gowda too ignored the matter and did not submit the report at all.
Taking cognizance of the alleged defiance, the NCST has fixed a hearing on the matter and summoned Gowda to appear in person for the hearing.
Collector Gowda, however, did not attend the hearing to be held on February 16. and sent a Deputy Collector (Encroachment) in his place. To ignore the summons to appear in person and irritated by this gesture of giving up the hearing, The commission exercised its civil court powers under clause (8) of Article 338A and on February 21 ordered Rajnish Seth to arrest Gowda. And has issued an order to bring them personally before the NCST.
The next hearing has been fixed on the date of March 2
Fully explaining your stand in writing, Collector Gowda has also claimed that the state government had allotted the lease of the land in dispute to the cement company for limestone mining on the date of April 30, 1979.
He has acknowledged receiving the summons to attend the hearing before the NCST in respect of the complaint. However, due to other commitments, he could not attend the hearing personally at all and the Commission has been informed through a letter dated 13th February.
Gowda has also stated that the Deputy Collector (Encroachment) had been authorized to attend the hearing in place of the Collector and the Commission was also informed. The Deputy Collector has appeared in the hearing before the Commission.
Collector Gowda has also made it abundantly clear that the detailed report on the Kushambi tribal land issue sought by the NCST was sent to the commission twice on October 12, 2022, and January 30, 2023. He has also said that he will appear before the NCST to clarify the facts in the dispute.