Against Anti-Encroachment Drive In Patna, 20 Injured

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Patna: During an anti-encroachment drive, more than 20 persons were injured when an irate mob clashed with at Ghurdaur Road in Rajeev Nagar locality of Patna on Tuesday.

At least eight policemen, including Digha police station SHO Rajiv Dubey, were injured in the attack. The incident started when a team of district administration and police reached the colony to demolish illegal constructions on the land acquired by the Bihar State Housing Board (BSHB) in the 1970s.

The situation deteriorated after the mob set on fire three JCB machines and a police vehicle and blocked the Danapur-Digha main road by placing burning tyres.  Locals claimed that over 50 rounds were fired, creating panic in the area. The police said they had to open fire in self-defence. They also claimed that the anti-encroachment drive was being carried put on the orders of the Patna high court.

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The dispute in Rajiv Nagar is quite old .The BSHB had in 1974 decided to acquire 1054 acres of land in the present Rajeev Nagar for the proposed Digha Housing Colony. After acquisition of the land, the BSHB invited applications for giving plots and about 12,000 persons applied for it by submitting the requisite amount.

The Bihar government enacted a law on April 20, 2010 for resolving the dispute. The state cabinet subsequently approved the Digha Land Acquisition Settlement Rules and Scheme 2014, fixing the rate to settle the disputed lands, but the landowners were not convinced and maintained that their land had not been acquired by the government.

Those who have already constructed houses on the disputed plots are also not ready to pay to the government as per the prevailing MVR rate.  With the situation going out of control, the police had to make a retreat.

Reported By: Priyanka Dutta