Justice SM Subramaniam was passing orders on a plea moved by a resident of Kabilakurichi village panchayat seeking Rs 10 lakh as compensation owing to the failure of the authorities in acting against the local ward members who allegedly encroached government poromboke land and village cart-road by using their political and muscle power.
Rejecting the petitioner’s plea for compensation as he himself had allegations of illegally tapping drinking water from the main line using an electric motor, Justice Subramaniam said, “The power conferred on executives, elected persons and other authorities is a sword. Such persons are expected to be mindful, dutiful and act with utmost responsibility and accountability.
“In the event of indulging in any such illegal activities or the heinous offences like grabbing of government land, the said allegations committed by elected persons and the executives and the authorities are to be construed as against the society at large and they must be prosecuted mercilessly,” the court stressed.
It also lamented that an ordinary citizen was unable to raise objections against such politically influential people or the members of the political parties, and out of fear, many such instances were not brought to the notice of the government. “In these circumstances, even information through anonymous letters ought to be enquired into by the government in order to cull out the truth.
When the allegations of heinous offences, including land grabbing, is brought to the knowledge of the government, the District Collectors are expected to play a serious role as they will have first-hand information from the local people,” Justice Subramaniam held. Contrarily, few officials from the Police or Revenue departments or other departments were either actively or passively colluding with land grabbers who belong to political parties, the court added.