The unfolding scenes and stories on the Gyalpoizhing land scam, so it is stated in the media, is a drama that will have far reaching consequences.
The nation and its citizens woke up to this scam through detailed reports in the media in which it was alleged that the allocation of land in Gyalpoizhing town was flawed, laws were broken, influential and powerful people benefitted from this unsaintly act. Due to the relentless media campaign and focus, the Government acceded to the proposal of an anti-corruption investigation, which was then commissioned. The Commission then came up with a supposedly viable case, which merited filing in the court of law. The case file with all evidences was handed over to the prosecution arm of the Government, which is the Office of the Attorney General (OAG).
As per the provisions of the law and as per standard operating procedures, the ACC issued suspension order of key officials who were involved in the case. The OAG and the Government challenged the suspension order and declared that there was no merit in the case and that it was unconstitutional. Hearings were held in the High Court in which partial relieve was the verdict. With OAG refusing to take the mantle, ACC then decided to go alone and registered the case in Mongar District court where now battles are being fought.
The outcome of this case will have far reaching impact in the psychic of this nation. The battle here is fought in the premise of the executive being allegedly guilty of abuse of power, authority and the audacious grabbing of this scarce resource. The ACC has been smacked, ridiculed and bruised in the process of dragging the executive to the court. The onus now is on the Judiciary who has this heavy burden and responsibility of giving its verdict. Not only has the judiciary to be seen impartial, it has to act impartially. This verdict either way will be the harbinger of what is to come in future. For sure though the outcome of this case will not rest to be forgotten in files and steel cabinets. Legal experts in future will study and dissect the proceedings and the verdict and many will give their own verdicts of this fractious legal battle. Does this sound ominous?
Let the verdict be pronounced first.
By Phuntsho Dukpa in KUENSEL