Chhattisgarh Minister Brijmohan Agrawal’s wife Sarita Agrawal and their son have bought 4.12 hectares of government-owned forest land and are building a resort on it. Indian Express reported that the BJP leader’s Agriculture Ministry deems it impossible to take any action against them. Agrawal is a former MLA of Raipur and is currently the Minister of Agriculture, Water Resources and Religious Trusts and Endowments. Sarita Agrawal bought the land in September 2009 when he was the Minister for School Education, Public Works Department, Parliamentary Affairs, Tourism and Culture, according to IE.
Build in Sirpur in the Mahasamund district, the Shyam Vatika resort surrounds the site of Buddhist excavations. The area is a potential tourist destination, according to Agarwal’s Ministry. Sarita Agarwal and her son Abhishek Agarwal are directors of Aditya Srijan Private Limited. Abhishek Agarwal is the director of Purbasa Vanijya Private Limited. Both the companies have acquired land for the project.
In March 2015, Lalit Chandranahu of the Kisan Mazdoor Sangh of Mahasamund district brought the discrepancy in land ownership to Mahasamund Collector Umesh Kumar Agrawal and the then Raipur Commissioner Ashok Agarwal. Chandranahu said that the plot was not shown as government-owned in revenue records, IE reported. In August 2016, he complained that the land was bought by the Minister’s wife.
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In December 2016, a complaint went to the Prime Minister’s Office stating, “Respected Modiji, look at the irony, some influential people have now usurped government land in their name, This has been done in a complete violation of all norms and government directions, because as you know, there is a set procedure for distribution of government land and without the state Cabinet’s approval this cannot be distributed.”
So far, the Forest Department has written to the Water Resources Department to change the revenue records considering the land was forest land. However, Brij Mohan Agarwal responded that the land has been sold to Sarita Agarwal, therefore, no action can be taken against her. In June this year, the Collector has again written to the Forest and Water Resources departments.