PANJIM: More than 400 illegal constructions of mostly locals have sprung up on the land belonging to the Comunidade of Anjuna with the magnanimous blessings of politicians, inviting the cynical tag of Fukot Waddo to this particular ward of Anjuna.
|Specimen of Agreement of Assignment of Grant |
made by Anjuna Comunidade’s then managing
Many of these illegal houses are rented out to foreigners during the tourist season for around Rs 3,000 per month and the illegal encroachers make a killing essentially on Comunidade land, claiming that they are landless. The Comunidade falls within the jurisdiction of the Siolim constituency presently represented by Water Resources Minister Dayanand Mandrekar.
The former Administrator of Bardez Narayan M Gad refused to act against the illegalities even when memoranda and complaints were submitted to him and much pressure exerted for him to act against the encroachers.
The managing committee of the Comunidade of Anjuna of which Bartholomew D’Souza was attorney had written to Gad to initiate action against the more than 400 illegal constructions in survey numbers 407 and 436 of Anjuna village, but he failed to do so, informs D’Souza.
“Most of these illegal occupants themselves have their own houses, but have illegally occupied Comunidade land, claiming that they are landless”, D’Souza informed.
D’Souza alleged that the previous managing committee of Comunidade of Anjuna had opened secret bank accounts in the name of the Comunidade and tried to falsely regularize illegal encroachments by accepting cash at Rs 225 per square metre (officially), when the Government had fixed the rate for Anjuna village at over Rs 900 per square metre.
The previous committee made false agreements on stamp paper titled “Agreement of Assignment of Grant” with the encroachers, D’Souza informed.
For instance, plot 304 located on survey number 407/1,was illegally assigned to Mangaldas Khemu Govekar of Arpora for Rs 68,400 and payment of lease amount of Rs 45,000.
The committee itself admits in the Assignment of Grant that these are encroachers but says that illegal construction and encroachments are being regularized in view of a resolution taken at GBM held on April 10, 2005 and extraordinary GBM held on August 14, 2005. Very amusingly, the agreement also says that the encroachers have urged the Comunidade not to file legal proceedings against them and admitted their guilt and requested for pardoning them.
Twenty such illegal agreements were made even though there is no provision in the Code of Comunidades for such agreements. Grantees were asked to pay in the bank account of the Comunidade of Anjuna and the then escrivao (clerk) helped all encroachers to deposit their respective amounts in the secret Comunidade bank account, D’Souza stated in his submission to the then administrator of Comunidades of Bardez.
D’Souza, the former attorney of Anjuna Comunidade stated that around 20 such illegal agreements and transactions were brought to the notice of Gad, with proof of the illegal transactions, including the illegal agreements made on stamp paper. But Gad took action only against only three occupants, that too after higher authorities were approached by his managing committee.
No action was initiated against the 17 other illegal agreements by Gad who at that time admitted the illegalities saying “It is understood that they too are illegal”, claims D’Souza. These illegal structures, besides hundreds others, are flagrantly violating the rights of the Comunidade and the lands that were handed down to the community by their ancestors.