State rejects Army plea to use land for field firing
The State government has rejected the Defence Ministry’s plea to allow it to continue its operations in the land which was being utilised by the Indian Army for carrying out field firing and artillery practice at Jawahar Nagar in Shamirpet mandal of Medchal district.
Hyderabad: The State government has rejected the Defence Ministry’s plea to allow it to continue its operations in the land which was being utilised by the Indian Army for carrying out field firing and artillery practice at Jawahar Nagar in Shamirpet mandal of Medchal district.
The Revenue officials will now resume the 503-acre land and will hand it over to ex-servicemen. According to an information furnished under the RTI filed by an activist B V Sheshagiri, the Army authorities have been using the land for artillery practice since 2013 though the lease was not renewed by the district authorities.
Local revenue officials said there was no lease agreement over the land in Survey No 921 of Jawaharnagar. Through a GO MS No 85 issued on February 16, 1986, the government authorised the Army for a term of eight months for carrying out periodically field firing and artillery practice at Shamirpet Field Firing Range (SFFR). The term has been extended from time to time through various Government Orders. As per the RTI, the Army is carrying out the practice around 503- acre land.
Finally, a notification was issued on August 20, 2011, allowing the government to extend the term up to March 25, 2012. Thereafter in the year 2013 the General Officer, Commanding, Headquarters Telangana, Andhra Sub-Area, appears to have requested for extension of the notification up to March 31,2017. But, Ranga Reddy District Collector rejected to extend the lease in view of the objection raised by the Managing Director, Hyderabad Growth Corridor Limited (HGCL), a wing of Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA).
Looking back into the history of this land, during the year 1941 the British Army authority acquired an extent of land 5977 acre of land in Hyderabad State. On July 23, 1951, Military Estate Officer had taken over the possession of this land for ex-servicemen specially those who were demobilised from the British Troop or Hyderabad Army.
Meanwhile in 1952, the Revenue Department of the Hyderabad government had been assigned to rehabilitate ex-servicemen. As per Government Orders, a co-operative society was registered in the name of Jawaharnagar Cooperative Land Colonisation Society (JCLCS).
Though the land was transferred to the JCLCS, it was under the custody of Registrar of Co-Operative Societies (RCS). When there were allegations of mismanagement against the managing committee of the society, the District Collector superseded the committee and appointed Cooperative Sub-Registrar as a special officer.
Further on the representation given by the members of the society, the Collector recommended the government for recovery of the land from the society and assign it to the eligible ex-servicemen directly. This was considered by the government and a GO was issued saying that the land be recovered from JCLCS and that disposed of by way of individual assignment to ex-servicemen for whom the scheme was originally intended on priority basis.
By Naveen Kumar