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Bhopal City
MPHC: Probe missing record of Noor-Us-Sabah land

BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh High Court (MPHC) has directed Bhopal collector to conduct an inquiry into the missing revenue records related to Noor-Us-Sabah and adjoining areas. The missing records are about an estimated 17.80 acre land, which after mutation of property is in name of industrialist Sikander Hafiz Khan. Sources said the land was transferred through a 'hibanama' (gift deed) by Sajida Sultan, daughter of Nawab of Bhopal.

High Court Justice RS Jha issued the order on January 21 on a PIL by Zainuddin Shah, secretary, Safia Education Society (SES), Bhopal. The PIL urged the HC to direct collector to hold an inquiry in the matter and circumstances in which revenue record of 1999, which was in name of Khan, went missing. The inquiry has to be completed in six months.

“SDM is investigating the matter. We are yet to ascertain if documents are missing," said district collector Nishant Warwade. Asked what if records were not recovered, he said, "Record would be reconstructed.”

With his PIL, complainant produced certified letters from tehsildar of tehsil Huzoor stating revenue case mentions mutation of a portion of khasra 52 of Koh-e-Fiza to Khan, but documents are not available with tehsildar's court or in district record room.

Case of missing records comes in backdrop of Union home ministry's office of custodian of enemy property for India (CEPI) asking the state government to prepare a list of properties belonging to the last Nawab of Bhopal state. On February 24, CEPI sent a notice to the state government, vesting control of all properties of the Nawab of Bhopal as his heir apparent Abida Sultaan had migrated to Pakistan in 1950. Noor-Us-Sabah was built by the Nawab for Abida Sultaan.

Petitioner also requested for investigation by CBI and CID in the matter involving exchange of property worth crores over which litigation is pending. The land either belongs to heirs of Nawab of Bhopal or the government and the facts can only be cleared when all papers are traced, Shah in his petition said.

Sources in government said khasra 52 has around 72.57 acre. Of this, 27.44 acre is registered in name of Khan and his private company. Through a hibanama in 1987, Sajida Sultaan gave 17.80 acre of prime land, including Noor-Us-Sabah to Khan. Records of land which was in his name after mutation in 1999 are now missing, sources said.

Warwade mentioned both complainant Zainuddin and Khan have a history of animosity. Earlier in August, Khan's company sued Zainuddin for making misleading claims over ownership of the project site. In June 2014, MPHC in a major relief to promoters and developers of Noor-us-Sabah Residency, dismissed applications filed by SES challenging construction on land bearing survey No. 52. SES was issued notice by state government over its functioning in November 2014. When contacted, SES officials said they have responded to all queries from government and another hearing on the issue is next week.