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The Jammu and Kashmir National Panthers Party today challenged the state government to demolish residential colonies built by "powerful politicians" by encroaching forest land in Bhatindi-Sunjwan belt, a party spokesman said today. In Jammu, more than 1,500 acres of land has been encroached upon as the Jammu Development Authority is yet to demarcate 6,818 acres of land meant for development, given to it in 1973. JKNPP chairman Harsh Dev Singh alleged that "some of the prime residential colonies and other concrete structures in Jammu were developed by powerful politicians by encroaching forest land". "We dare the government to retrieve the forest land from the ministers, MLAs, MLCs and other bureaucrats in areas like Bhatindi, Sunjwan, Chowadi, Nagrota, Bajalta, Roop Nagar, Bantalab in the vicinity of Jammu city," he said. In September, in a crackdown on land mafia, the Jammu and Kashmir government demolished 82 concrete structures and removed encroachments from over 125 acres of state-owned land on the city's outskirts.
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