Scams prompt survey of 16,000 acres of defence land

Oct 31 2012, 03:14 IST
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SummaryPune estates office undertakes mega project.

Pune estates office undertakes mega project.

233-A Lohegaon, 8 A Lothian Road. This is arguably the city’s own small parallel to Adarsh and Sukna scams that prompted the need for better management of defence land. The exercise is, in fact, in the offing.

After digitisation of land records, a project to survey, demarcate and verify the status of 16,000 acres of military land in Pune district, besides seven other districts, has been undertaken by the Defence Estates Office (DEO), Pune Circle. The survey is part of a larger national project by the Directorate General of Defence Estates (DGDE).

G S Rajeswaran, DEO, Pune Circle told The Indian Express, “We started the survey in the last week of September and it is expected to cross to 2014. There are two kinds of defence lands; the General Land Register, the survey of which is under cantonment boards, and Military Land Register surveyed by DEOs.”

The DEO Pune Circle has stations spread over eight districts including Pune, Ahmednagar, Aurangabad, Sangli, Kolhapur and Sindhudurg covering 58,000 acres of defence land. Three teams of the DEO with assistance from the State Revenue Department have taken up primary tasks pertaining to the defence land survey such as obtaining details,verifying total Defence land and authenticating it on the ground, seeking information on disputed lands and encroachments and constructing boundary pillars wherever necessary. This data will be compiled, and a computerised database created.

The Pune Cantonment Board (PCB) has 2,012 acres under it, a GPS-aided survey of which is being initiated. A tender was floated in July and the contract is being awarded for demarcating and fixing boundary pillars using Global Positioning System (GPS). The project is expected to be completed in three months.

PCB vice-president Aarti Mahajan said, “A survey on ground zero has not been done since 1954. We initiated the GPS survey on the basis instructions from the DGDE. The GPS-aided survey is expected to help us tally our records with structures on ground zero which in turn will help us determine encroachments. The work order for the GPS survey will be issued shortly.”

Management of defence land became a crucial issue after the Adarsh scam. In a press release dated July 14, 2011, the Ministry of Defence had stated, “Defence Minister A K Antony has directed the DGDE to immediately conduct a reality check on the ground to determine the status of defence land all over

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