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Widow of 1965 war martyr exempted from paying cost of land

Maharashtra government told the Bombay High Court that it had exempted a war widow from paying for the land allotted to her.

Indira Jadhav (72), whose husband died in the 1965 Indo-Pak war, had moved the court over delay in allotment of a plot of land to her.

On August 5, the court had imposed a cost of Rs. 75,000 on the officials concerned of the state government for the delay.

Today, the government lawyer told the division bench headed by Justice Abhay Oka that formalities for allotment had been started and Jadhav would not be charged either the cost of the land or the survey fees.

The High Court said Jadhav should not be made to do the rounds of the government offices to complete the formalities. The judges also suggested that for the purpose of identification, Adhar card would be sufficient, and if she does not have it, any other identification card should be accepted.

The court was peeved earlier when it learnt that Jadhav had not been handed over the possession of a 10-acre plot in coastal Ratnagiri, though she had produced letters from the then Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and the Army Chief.

According to Jadhav’s petition, she was forced to take voluntary retirement as a primary school teacher in Ratnagiri as she could not afford the house rent in the city.

Jadhav, who now lives in Pune, lost her husband Babaji, a jawan with Maratha Light Infantry, on October 27, 1965 in Ladakh.

Before his death Babaji had applied for land to the Collector of Ratnagiri under a provision that gave armymen priority in allotment of land for cultivation.

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