As per the Law Minister, Pratap Jena, the Odisha state government is planning to sell more than 35,000 acre of land belonging to Jagannath Temple in seven states. The Law Minister told this to the Assembly on Tuesday.
The Law Minister, Pratap Jena responded in writing to the question by BJP lawmaker Mohan Charan Singh.
As per Jena, a committee was formed under the chairmanship of then governor BD Sharma. And the government is now taking the necessary steps to sell 35,000 acres of the land (belonging to Jagannath temple) based on the recommendations of that committee.
As per Jana, Lord Jagannath owns 60,426.943 acres of land that is spread over 24 districts out of the 30 districts of the state of Odisha. And the Jagannath temple administration was able to file the final Record of Rights (RoR) for over 34,876.983 acres only.
“In accordance with the recommendation of the commission, steps are being taken to sell out the land as per state government’s approved Uniform Policy (Saman Niti),” the minister told the Assembly.
Jena also informed that the 315 acres of Jagannath’s land has already been sold. This part of land also included Bharati Matha building in Cuttack City. And the earnings from the sale, that was approximately 11 crore, was deposited to the temple Corpus fund.
At the same time the government is also taking the steps to sell 395 acres of land that is being identified in six different states outside the state of Odisha. The government has informed the concerned District Collectors, in writing, regarding this purpose, said Jena.
The details of the land owned by Lord Jagannath in 6 different states as identified by the government is – 322.930 acre in West Bengal, 25.110 acre in Madhya Pradesh, 28.218 acre in Maharashtra, 1.700 acre in Chhattisgarh, 17.020 acre in Andhra Pradesh and 0,274 acre in Bihar.
Also a hundred acres of land has been identified at Bagha area and the government takes the contribution of paddy yields and sells it. The same process is followed in the Dochhian area, said Jena.
In addition Jena also informed about the 582 acres of land located in Khurda area, that has been given to Odisha Cashew Development Corporation on a lease basis and the government is earning INR 3 lakh per annum from this cooperation.
As per the sources, people who occupied Srimandir land will also have to pay a hefty sum of money in order to take possession of the land. The amount to be paid depends on the duration since they have been occupying that land.
Those who have occupied the land for more than 30 years will have to pay INR 6 lakh per acre and those who occupied the land for less than 30 years but more than 20 years will have to pay the sum of INR 9 lakh per acre and those who have occupied the land for less than 20 years but more than 12 years will have to pay a sum of INR 15 lakh per acre to get the possession of the land.
The law minister, Pratap Jena further said the state government has constituted four commissions with the objective of bringing reforms and effectively probe various incidents related to the Jagannath temple.
The panels are—a committee headed by BD Sharma, Justice BK Patra Commission, Justice BP Das Commission and Justice PK Mohanty Commission. Also a committee has been constituted to implement the recommendations made by these commissions. This committee will be under the chairmanship of temple chief administrator and it will also follow the approval of Sri Jagannath temple managing committee.