J'khand govt asked to maintain status quo on disputed land

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Ranchi, May 14 (UNI) Jharkhand High Court today asked the state government to maintain the statusquo in connection with the construction of 'samadhi sthal' of slain MP Sunil Mahto in Jamshedpur.

The court also issued notice on Jamshedpur MP Suman Mahto, widow of the late parliamentarian and state Revenue Minister Dulal Bhuian, both leaders of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, not to move forward with their plan till the court cleared the matter.

Justice R K Merathia passed the order while hearing a writ petition filed by Tata Steel.

The steel company yesterday approached the High Court seeking quashing of the state land and revenue department's move for redemption of land leased out to them. The government was planning to set up a memorial of the slain MP at the Ganesh Puja Maidan, now under dispute at Jamshedpur.

Mr Indrajeet Sinha, appearing on behalf of the steel company, informed the court that under the lease it was not permissible to resume land earmarked for civic amenities.

Mr Sinha also challenged the letter written by the minister to the secretary revenue and land.

Mr Bhuian had written a letter to Tata Steel to release the land measuring ten thousand square feet in question for construction of 'samadhi sthal' of late Sunil Mahto.

Earlier, the authorities imposed section 144 on the controversial land.

On May 9, Ms Mahto, Mr Bhuian and JMM workers violated section 144 and tried to construct the memorial at the Ganesh Puja Maidan.

The Jamshedpur district administration tried to prevent them from doing so and while the JMM activists remained adamant on their demand, the authorities had to lodge an FIR with the police station against the leaders.

However, Jamshedpur DC Nitin Madan Kulkarni and SDO Ranjan Choudhary were transferred immediatley following intense pressure from the JMM.

The IAS officers association decried the decision saying the officers were trying to uphold the law of the land.

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