iconimg Saturday, August 29, 2015

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times
Shimla, October 07, 2013
Four days after the state vigilance and anti-corruption bureau booked him in a case pertaining to land deal in Dharamsala, former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal's younger son Arun Dhumal on Monday launched a counter offensive against chief minister Virbhadra Singh, accusing him of using the vigilance bureau for pursuing political vendetta.

Arun was booked along with his elder brother Anurag Thakur, who heads the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA).

To endorse his viewpoint, Arun distributed documents related to land purchase and simultaneously raised question on the Virbhadra Singh government.

He tried to justify that there were no malafide intentions. “I have some specific questions that under whose complaint the case was lodged or how come the vigilance came into picture in the sale and purchase of land by private individuals or are every land deals in the state are being probed or just a specific family is being targeted off and on,” said Arun, denying any wrongdoings in the land purchase. To prove his point he also showed the signed affidavit of land owner Premu.

“Premu, who has now died, in his affidavit submitted to the registrar had said he does not become landless after selling this land as claimed by vigilance officials,” said Dhumal junior, adding that the land was indeed allotted to the seller, but it was sold after a cap period of 15 years was over.”

He accussed the state government of using the vigilance bureau to settle political scores.
He claimed that they have the papers to substantiate their stance.“We have enough papers to justify our claim, but if chief minister Virbhadra Singh wants to continue with mudslinging we are ready for it,” he added.

Interestingly, Arun parried questions on being asked that chief minister Virbhadra Singh had earlier accused the BJP government of using vigilance for settling political scores and now he himself (Arun) was raising questions on the vigilance bureau.

In reply to a question on land purchase, junior Dhumal said the land in question was bought with an intent to construct a house.

“The chief minister has been targeting the HPCA headed by Anurag Thakur, targeting my father Prem Kumar Dhumal by alleging frivolous allegations and now targeting me,” Arun said, adding that anticipating vendetta politics by the Congress government, the HPCA was converted into company from society to free it from the interference of the state government. Arun, who himself is the vice-president of the HPCA, promised more disclosure on Tuesday.

Targets media

Media shy Arun Dhumal one after the other raised questions on media and the reports published in both leading English dailies and vernacular press. What's was more surprising that he even referred to names of journalist for publishing reports “full of ambiguity”.