Over 500 illegal land brokers arrested in Assam

Guwahati, Sep 21 (PTI) Over 500 people allegedly involved in illegal land broking activities have been arrested in Assam since Monday night as police cracked the whip on such middlemen.

While over 450 were arrested in overnight operations, the rest 70 were apprehended during the day, an Assam Police spokesperson said.

Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who had warned of acting tough against illegal brokers a few days back, had informed on Twitter on Tuesday morning about the arrest of 453 illegal land brokers.

He had later told reporters here that a list with about 700 names was there with the police and more arrests will be made.

The number of arrests touched 520 till 5 pm on Tuesday, the spokesperson said.

The highest number of 52 arrests was made in Kamrup (Rural) district.

As many as 41 suspected illegal brokers were apprehended in Barpeta district, followed by 35 in Guwahati (Kamrup Metropolitan), 33 in Biswanath and 31 in Nalbari, he added.

The chief minister urged people to restrain from approaching land brokers and wait for a few days to get their work done directly from the offices concerned.

Noting that sometimes people have to pay bribes to get death certificates of their relatives, the chief minister said there should be no middlemen in any government office.

“If we want our state to progress, this has to stop. There should be no dalals’ (middlemen) in any office, be it in police stations, or revenue offices,” Sarma said.

The chief minister, in a meeting with officials of the Revenue and Disaster Management Department on September 7, had said middlemen must be eliminated from the system and people should be empowered to get their land-related works done without any hassle.