Aurangabad, Maharashtra, Apr 10 UNI | 4 months ago

The Aurangabad bench of Bombay High Court has recently issued notices to the Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister and former irrigation minister Ajit Pawar, and ten others for their alleged involvement in irregularities in acquisition of land for the Khutephal water storage project.

In a news conference here today, Advocate Vilas Sonawane, who filed a writ petition on behalf of the affected farmers. the notice was issued by the division bench of high court comprising Justices R M Borde and A M Badar, on April 7.

He said, "After receiving a letter from local MLA Suresh Dhas then irrigation minister Ajit Pawar had given direction to the district collector to acquire 193 hectares of land for the khutephal water storage project."

They were not concerned about availability of water for this project by the water resources department and Mr Pawar had allotted the project work to Raj Promoters and Civil Engineers Pvt Ltd owned by Jagdish Kadam, Adv Sonawane said.

The next hearing of the matter will be held on May 5, when the court will ask all the respondents to file their reply on that day, he said.

Adv Sonawane filed the writ petition on behalf of the affected farmers -- Machindra Thorve, Navnath Throve, Sachin Mugase and Sandip Kakade, all hailing from the same village, whose land was acquired for the project.

The farmers alleged that their land was acquired by the administration using police force, in addition, they did not get adequate compensation as per the then prevailing market rate.

(Posted on 10-04-2014)