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AJL plot allotment: Leader of Opposition writes to Khattar, demands registration of a criminal case against Hooda

Various senior BJP leaders including Haryana’s Health Minister Anil Vij had been demanding that a criminal case be registered against Hooda and others for giving away the plot to AJL in violation of norms.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh |
May 4, 2016 1:12:06 am
ajl, ajl plot allotment, ajl scam, ajl violation, bhupinder singh hooda, land violation, legal violation, haryana, chandigarh, latest news BJP government, last week, had also withdrawn the Cabinet minister status given to Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

The Bharatiya Janata Party led Haryana government is likely to further tighten the noose around former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, a senior Congress leader. The Leader of Opposition, an Indian National Lok Dal MLA, Abhay Singh Chautala today wrote to Haryana Chief Minister, Manohar Lal Khattar, demanding registration of a criminal case against Hooda “in public interest”.

Referring to the allotment, in 2005, of a plot measuring 3,360 square meters to Associated Journals Ltd in Panchkula’s plush Sector 6 in 2005, Chautala had urged Khattar to get a criminal case registered against Hooda on charges of criminal breach of trust, embezzlement, forgery, corruption and criminal conspiracy.

The Indian Express was the first to report, on December 12 and December 18, 2015, how the Congress government in Haryana led by Bhupinder Singh Hooda had given the prime chunk of land to AJL in violation of various norms and against the advice of legal department.

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“I am sure that you are aware of a number of newspaper reports that have highlighted the manner in which plot no. C-17, measuring 3,360 square meters, in the prime Sector 6 of Panchkula was re-allotted to the Associated Journals Ltd (AJL) in 1982 but after the company failed to make use of the said land, it was resumed in the year 1996. However, no sooner had the Congress been voted to power in 2005, the then Chief Minister, Shri Bhupinder Singh Hooda, initiated the process of restoring the plot to AJL on a representation made on its behalf by one of the trustees”, Abhay wrote in his letter addressed to Khattar.

Various senior BJP leaders including Haryana’s Health Minister Anil Vij had been demanding that a criminal case be registered against Hooda and others for giving away the plot to AJL in violation of norms.

“It is evident from the enclosed newspaper reports that the then Chief Minister was advised by the Administration as well as by the LR that there was no legal provision for such re-allotment and if however, the provisions or policy allow, then it can only be allotted afresh at the prevalent rates. In view of the above facts, a prima facie cognizable criminal offence has been made out against all above mentioned persons. Hence, a criminal case be registered under Sections 406, 409, 467 and 468 IPC and 13 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act read with Section 12-B IPC against Shri Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the then Chief Minister and Chairman of Haryana Urban Development Authority, for illegal allotment of plot no. C-17, to the Associated Journals Ltd. in Sector 6, Panchkula at an appropriate police station in public interest,” Abhay wrote.

Bhupinder Singh Hooda, however, termed the move as a ‘conspiracy’ between INLD and BJP. “Both [INLD and BJP] are hand in glove. I have yet not seen that letter, but whatever you have told me about the said letter, it is absurd. I would not like to comment any further about it till I see it. But, INLD must first handle their own cases before looking towards me.”

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When questioned about the timing of his letter written today when Indian Express had exposed it in December, last year, Abhay said, “I had been asking the ruling government to act, but it is a government that is sleeping. They lack the willingness to take action against their predecessors. Thus, it was important for me to write and shake them a bit again”.

BJP government, last week, had also withdrawn the Cabinet minister status given to Hooda. During his regime, Hooda Cabinet had passed a decision that all the former Chief Ministers of Haryana be given a Cabinet status for the lifetime even if they fail to secure another term in power.

Abhay had requested Khattar to withdraw Hooda’s cabinet rank status since Hooda was asked by Justice (retd.) Dhingra commission to appear for the ongoing inquiry in connection with the colony licenses awarded to Robert Vadra’s company and various other colonisers and builders. Hooda, however, had yet not appeared before the Commission.

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The acquisition of AJL by Young Indian Pvt Ltd, in which Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi hold 38 per cent shares each, had been at the centre of a political storm with a Delhi court summoning both the Congress leaders on December 19 last year. BJP leader Subramanian Swamy had filed a complaint in 2012 alleging cheating and breach of trust in the acquisition.

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First published on: 04-05-2016 at 01:12:06 am
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