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3rd defendant submits rebuttal statement

Preliminary hearing for other plot allotment committee members also begins

Gyalpoizhing Case: Of the three booked for criminal charges in the Gyalpoizhing land case, one of the then plot allotment committee members, Dechen Singye yesterday submitted his opening statement to the court.

He was booked under NA 1-2 of 1953 Thrimzhung Chhenmo for official misconduct, including fraud and forgery. He was also accused of allotting a plot to his sister.

Dechen Singye said he was not guilty of official misconduct and of the other charges.

Presenting his statement to the court yesterday, Dechen Singye said that if his intention really was to go against the law or deceive the government, he would have kept the land ownership in one of his immediate family members’ names, like some committee members did.

He said he applied and signed for a plot on his sister’s behalf, who had verbally authorised him over the phone to do so because she could not make it in person “for some domestic reasons”.

Dechen Singye said he applied for the land at Gyalpoizhing in his sister’s name in keeping with her request and that he had no intentions of deceiving the government.

“I would like to also submit that the suspension order ACC issued against me on November 15 be either lifted in line with other defendants, as the nature of the case is the same or be considered punishment in itself,” he said

Preliminary hearings the four civil cases against other Gyalpozhing land allotment committee members also began yesterday.

Former Mongar dzongrab Tapo who was a land allotment committee member was the first to be summoned, followed by Tashi Norbu Sherpa, CL Das and Sangay Dorji who were all charged for official misconduct.

Individually summoned, they were briefed on the dos and don’ts under the court of law and issued a copy of different charges filed against them by Anti-Corruption Commission.

While three them would have to submit their rebuttal statements on the charges filed against them on January 3, Sangay Dorji’s hearing will be on January 10.

Mongar district court between November 13 and November 14 registered 75 cases related to Gyalpozhing land allotment.


By Dechen Tshering, Mongar

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