Growing meance of land mafia; escalating land rates in Braj

2024.05.31 (Vrindavan Today News): The unchecked growth of the land mafia in Mathura and its surrounding regions is not only disrupting the social fabric but also threatening the natural environment and religious sanctity of this historically and spiritually significant area.

The terror of land mafias is escalating in Mathura. The increasing land prices and the growing influx of pilgrims to this religious region are the primary reasons. Wealthy individuals are attracted to the Brij area for its religious significance, preferring to build temples and guest houses or seeking peace. Consequently, land prices are soaring.

This surge has given rise to land mafias. The escalating land rates and competition in real estate have transformed local thugs into real estate businessmen who, in their pursuit of quick money, frequently deceive customers.

Hundreds of land-grabbing cases are reported annually at the Vrindavan police station, with daily incidents of fraud making headlines. The areas along the roads from Kosi to Vrindavan and their adjoining regions are the most affected, with colonies mushrooming rapidly. The rising land prices have turned nearby towns into colonies, where a single plot is sold multiple times, leaving external buyers regretting their purchases. Post-deal, they often discover the land belongs to someone else. Daily land seizures, mafia dominance, and related violence have shaken the entire Brij area. The green belts from Delhi to Kosi are continuously encroached upon, transforming lush fields into large buildings, colonies, and complexes, disturbing the peace of Brij. The ongoing land purchases are affecting the tranquility, with disputes and violence deteriorating the environment.

The area of devotion is turning into an area of power. In Vrindavan, greenery is diminishing. Now, Govardhan, Barsana, and Radhakund are also under the land mafia’s grip, with colonies being carved out of green forests and agricultural fields. People are also engaging in business here from an investment perspective. The pertinent question is, if this continues, the entire green region might vanish in a few years. The religious fervor that draws people to Govardhan, Barsana, Radhakund, Jatipura, and Gokul Mahavan for peace and devotion is now tied to commerce. While job creation is beneficial, transforming green areas into concrete jungles without improving the local youth’s situation raises serious concerns.

In Mathura, Vrindavan, and the entire Braj region, the land mafia is so powerful that even high-ranking district officials bow to them. Be it the police, administration, or revenue departments, and even our politicians, all cater to the land mafia. Their influence on power circles disrupts law enforcement. Recently, a villager’s murder in Kaunhai (Radhakund) was a direct result of this. Frequent attacks by land mafias on the Radha Teela Bhajan Ashram in Rajpur Bangar, Vrindavan, go unchecked by the police. Two months ago, a notorious land mafia group organized a vulgar dance party with alcohol in Omex City, Vrindavan, under the guise of a Holi celebration. Despite videos and names emerging, the police only registered an FIR but have yet to act on it.

In Nandgaon, land mafias seized around 1,500 square yards from Balkrishna Goswami, who had been occupying it for 40 years, by manipulating a stay order. They displaced long-term residents, looted their belongings, and the Barsana police remained inactive. When the victims approached the police top brass, his response was dismissive, indicating a reluctance to act against the perpetrators. Despite waiting for five to six days, the Barsana police did not file an FIR. Such lawlessness is unparalleled.

A fortnight ago, in Azampur, within the Highway Police Station’s jurisdiction, a widow was murdered, and a purported land mafia took over her property while the family mourned. The local police have yet to take any action. These incidents are recurring daily, but major newspapers do not report them. Victims frequently seek justice from the police and administration but to no avail. Even the commissioner, exhausted from raising alarms about illegal colonies on Khadar lands on Yamuna Flood Plain, has seen no action against the perpetrators. The poor, lured by low prices, find themselves trapped, risking displacement by potential Yamuna floods. The key issue is the involvement of development authorities, revenue departments, registry departments, and electricity departments with the land mafias, ready to act on their commands.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *