Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday came down heavily on officials of the Land and Land Reforms Department, who, according to her, are in league with the land mafia and have been changing records of vacant government land in the region.

Addressing a review meeting on development work in Alipurduar district, Miss Banerjee said: “We will take strong legal action against them. Land mafia rackets are active in Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri areas. A group of officers from the Block Land and Land Reforms office (BLLRO), Subdivisional Land and Land Reforms office (SDLRO), district Land and Land Reforms office (DLLRO) and even the police are working hand-inglove with the land mafia.”

Notably, the CM was indirectly speaking on the ‘syndicate raj’ on material supply. “We have received two complaints from Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri districts where government land has been sold off to others. They are still selling government land in by-pass areas in Jalpaiguri district. They think government land is their own land. Dishonest land officials have committed the crime by helping them and taken transfer to other places by earning huge sums of extra money. But nobody will be spared,” Miss Banerjee said.

The CM asked the director general of police, Virendra, to take proper action against those involved in such land rackets, including the police and even the land mafia, “even if they are under my party.”

Notably, a group of party men, allegedly under the patronage of the Trinamul Congress, has been selling government land near Uttarkanya and the Dabgram Industrial Estate in the Dabgram- Fulbari area in Jalpaiguri.

“A dovecote has been formed in the land and land reforms department. We need to dismantle that dovecote,” the CM said, and asked department principal secretary, Manoj Panth, to break the caucus involved in corruption by changing the title and status of land owned by the state government by restructuring and reshuffling officials in the department.

“Salary apart, how much do they need to earn dishonestly for their livelihood? They earn lakhs and crores of rupees dishonestly. Both civil and criminal action would be taken against them,” she added.

Cake for DM birthday

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday began her administrative meeting at Uttarkanya by cutting a cake to celebrate the birthday of Alipurduar district magistrate Nikhil Nirmal. The CM offered her best wishes to Mr Nimal, who was appointed the DM recently.

Enrolment dates

Miss Banerjee asked officials of the Labour Department to begin enrollment of workers from unorganised sectors from 1 to 15 August under social security schemes.

She also asked labour department officials to let people know about the scheme though Block offices, police stations, zilla parishad, municipalities, MLAs and even MPs.

Birth, death schemes

The CM stressed on the need to implement two schemes meant for birth and death. Implementation of Sabujshree by providing a valuable seedling in the name of a newborn baby so that he or she, at the age of 18 year, gets at least Rs 2.5 lakh by selling the tree.

Similarly, Samabyathi Prokolpo should be implemented by providing financial assistance to the poor people for funeral expenses, she said.

A’duar industrial dev

Miss Banerjee asked principal secretary of the MSME and Textiles, Rajiva Sinha, to take proper steps for industrial development in Alipurduar after listening to a 10- minute speech from a representative of the Alipurduar Merchant Chambers of Commerce.

The CM also asked authorities concerned to change the present policy as she came to know from a CII representative that entrepreneurs are not getting lease deed until they invest 15 per cent of its project cost in an industrial estate. Bankers refuse to provide loan to the entrepreneurs without lease deed.