THE J&K administration on Tuesday removed Baseer Ahmad Khan as Lt Governor Manoj Sinha’s adviser.
While no reason was cited, an order issued by J&K’s General Administration Department said: “Pursuant to communication… of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, Shri Baseer Ahmad Khan (retired IAS 2000) is hereby relieved from the post of Advisor to the Lieutenant Governor, Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir with immediate effect.”
Khan was appointed adviser to Lt Governor G C Murmu in March last year and continued to hold the office under Murmu’s successor Manoj Sinha.
He was among 20 people named as accused in Gulmarg land scam, in which bureaucrats allegedly misused their official position and transferred ownership rights of state land to private hoteliers during 2008 in violation of the J&K State Lands (Vesting of Ownership to the Occupants) Act, 2001.
He was arrested and granted bail in 2013, when he was Deputy Commissioner of Kishtwar district of Jammu.
Khan was the Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, when the Centre scrapped J&K’s special status and bifurcated the state into two Union Territories on August 5, 2019. In fact, a month before the abrogation, the government extended his services for one year as a “special case”.
Khan was given the extension although he was charged in the Gulmarg land scam.
Most prominent of the three advisers of the Lt Governor, Khan held the key portfolios of Power Development, Rural Development, Relief and Reconstruction, Culture, Tourism, Planning and Industries and Commerce. With his departure, Lt Governor Sinha is left with two advisers – Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar and Farooq Khan.