30 years on, woman moves court to claim house papers from CBI - ECAS Punjab

30 years on, woman moves court to claim house papers from CBI

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Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5

For Kamaljit Kaur, the ordeal appears to be unending. More than three decades after Rs 5.7 crore was looted from a Punjab National Bank branch in Ludhiana, Karamjit Kaur — widow of once an accused in the case — has approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court for return of house documents seized by the Central Bureau of Investigation during the course of probe.

While the Supreme Court had acquitted nine persons sentenced to 10 years in jail under the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act for looting the bank, her husband Sukhpreet Singh alias Satnam Singh did not live long enough. The court was told that he died in October 1989 before facing the trial.

Appearing on her behalf, counsel Mansur Ali told the High Court that an FIR in the matter was registered under the provisions of the IPC and TADA by the premier investigating agency. While he was alive, the petitioner’s husband entered into an “agreement to sell” for the purchase of a house in Mohali. But the house documents were taken into custody by the CBI authorities. The petitioner approached PUDA and GMADA functionaries for the transfer of the house on the basis of the “agreement to sell” and a Will executed by the seller. But the Estate Officer, Urban Estate, Punjab, informed the petitioner that papers were in CBI’s possession.

The CBI was required to return the papers to the PUDA/GMADA authorities following the acquittal of the accused. “If the papers are in the court, the CBI is required to get the same released to respondents PUDA and GMADA. The respondents should approach the CBI for the same.... The fact that the trial has resulted into acquittal by the Supreme Court, all the papers of the house in question are liable to be returned,” he added. The Bench has put the State, PUDA, GMADA and the CBI on notice. The case will now come up in November first week.



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