Amitabh Bachchan does a volte-face | india | Hindustan Times
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Amitabh Bachchan does a volte-face

The superstar withdraws the letter in which he had expressed a desire to donate his 20 acres of land near Lonavala to dam-displaced people, reports Satyajit Joshi.

india Updated: Mar 25, 2008 03:52 IST
Satyajit Joshi

Superstar Amitabh Bachchan seems to be eager to retain his identity, recently regained in court, as a farmer.

On Monday, he withdrew a letter in which he had expressed a desire to donate his 20 acres of land near Lonavala to dam-displaced people.

The actor was in the eye of a storm some time ago, after he purchased the land in Pale near the picturesque Pavana dam, some 70 km from Mumbai, by attaching documents that showed he owned agricultural land in Daulatpur village in Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh.

<b1>The Pune administration cleared the transaction after scrutinising the documents, necessary since no person can purchase agricultural land in the state unless he already owns farmland in the country.

The UP government, however, filed a case against Bachchan, challenging the authenticity of the Daulatpur land documents. The court ruled against Bachchan, who sent a letter to the Pune divisional commissioner in September saying he wanted to donate the land.

After submitting the letter, Bachchan filed an appeal in the Lucknow High Court against the ruling of the lower court, and won.

“Sudhakar Joshi, given power of attorney for the land by Bachchan, submitted a letter today stating that Bachchan is withdrawing his earlier letter expressing his desire to donate the land,” said Sub-Divisional Officer of Wadgaon Maval taluka Sanjaysinh Chavan, who is conducting the hearing of the land case. “A final decision will be taken on the new letter after consulting senior officials.”

Joshi is a retired IAS official and has served as Pune divisional commissioner. Chavan sent Amitabh a letter this month, asking him to be present personally or through his lawyer on March 24 with all documents related to the land.

Also, the UP government is understood to have filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against the Lucknow High Court ruling.