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    Security and Crime

    MP backing land-grabbers: residents

    JALALABAD (PAN): Some tribal elders from the Khogyani district of eastern Nangarhar province on Wednesday accused Wolesi Jirga member Haji Abdul Zahir Qadeer of supporting land-grabbers.

    One of the tribal elders, who lodged their complaint with the provincial council, said that Qamar Zaman Zabuli of Surkhrod district had sold his land to Khogyani residents Babrak and Khair Mohammad.

    But another individual named Osman, supported by Zahir Qadeer, was trying to forcibly occupy the land, claimed the elder, Zabit Zahir, who said another lawmaker, Amir Jan Dawlatzai, was involved in selling government land.

    Police had beaten innocent people instead of arresting the land-grabbers, said another tribal elder, Mir Zaman. He warned of protests if the government did not take action against the influential figures.

    But the deputy police chief, Col. Masoom Khan Hashimi, said he had travelled to the town on Tuesday to resolve the dispute. Armed supporters of Qamar Zaman had set up illegal check-posts in the area, he added.

    “Police have arrested eight individuals with weapons,” the official revealed, saying the gunmen were held after they opened fire on police and killed a woman. 

    Provincial council member, Javed Zaman, confirmed some tribal elders had lodged a complaint. Without giving details, he said a number of Wolesi Jirga members had seized the land belonging to Zabuli.

    But Dawlatzai dismissed the allegations as baseless, saying: “I haven’t grabbed any land and am ready to face the penalty if found guilty of wrongdoing.”

    mm/mud