Chandigarh: Taking a tough stand in the illegal land possession case, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has ordered the Punjab government to take immediate action against the officials who own immovable properties in Shivalik range area near Nayagaon.

Decrying the Punjab government for not acting strictly against the officials, the joint bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Mahesh Grover asked, “Why the government wants to shield the officials?  Under which laws, they have bought the property in that area.” The court also asked that why the hearing of the case should not take place on daily basis?

The list of the 115 officials who are facing the heat of the court in this case includes three doctors, 36 IAS, 17 PCS, four IPS, 38 PPS and six IRS officers.  This list was submitted to the Chief Secretary of the Punjab Civil Secretariat by the state IG (Security).

The officials did not mention the details of their property in the Capital Area Periphery. The Punjab government has sought two weeks time from the court to take action in this regard. The court replied, “We are keen to see the action to be taken by the government.”

The High Court has termed the case akin to the notorious 2G scam.

According to the court, several big names are coming up in the case and therefore, it would not be easy for the court to hold the hearing of every official on daily basis. The court has already asked the government to set up a tribunal to explore the possibility of settlement of the case. During the last hearing, the government had informed the court that meetings are being convened by the state Chief Secretary with the secretaries of all departments in order to expedite disposal of the case.

ADGP/Railways Chandrasekhar had submitted a report to the High Court accusing the officers and politicians for their involvement in illegal possession of land and demanded a CBI probe into the case.