HPCA case: Guv nod to prosecuting Dhumal | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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HPCA case: Guv nod to prosecuting Dhumal

In a setback to the BJP governor Urmila Singh on Wednesday gave her consent to prosecuting former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal in the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) landen-croachment case.

chandigarh Updated: Apr 03, 2014 14:19 IST
Gaurav Bisht

In a setback to the BJP governor Urmila Singh on Wednesday gave her consent to prosecuting former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal in the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) landen-croachment case.

Additional chief secretary P Mitra, who is officiating chief secretary, had on Tuesday met the governor for the sanction of this order against Dhumal, now leader of the Opposition in the Vidhan Sabha. The governor is reported to have based her decision on legal opinion.

CM Virbhadra Singh had earlier discussed the matter with Mitra and additional chief secretary VC Pharkha.

According to rules, only the competent authority, in this case the governor, can give prosecution sanction against any former chief minister. The vigilance bureau draft charge sheet says that Dhumal was chief minister when irregularities occurred in the HPCA.

The bureau had alleged that in 2002, Dhumal, being patronin-chief of the state cricket body led by his parliamentarian son, Anurag Thakur, had influenced the cabinet decision to lease out almost 12 hectares to the cricket body for building an international stadium at Dharamsala. The lease money was a token Re. 1 for 99 years.

In August and October last year, the vigilance bureau had registered twin first-information reports (FIRs) against the HPCA for changing its status from society to company and encroaching upon the government land. The vigilance charge sheet had named 18 people, off only five (Dhumal, Anurag Thakur, additional chief secretary Deepak Sanan, IAS officer Ajay Sharma and senior HAS officer Gopal Chand) were made accused.