Former chief minister PK Dhumal and his son Anurag Thakur caused a Rs 100 crore loss to the state exchequer on land allotment to the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association in 2002, Congress said Sunday.
Party spokesperson Jairam Ramesh alleged the land for the stadium was given on lease at a measly sum of Rs one per month against the state government rule of leasing out at Rs 94 lakh per year.
"This not only led to a loss Rs 100 crore to the exchequer, the CM approved the decision in the cabinet on May 27, 2002 undermining the notings of senior officials of the state government," he said, producing supporting documents at a press conference.
Ramesh also claimed HPCA's request for the allotment of land in Dharamsala came after the approval was given.
Thakur, the cricket association and the BJP promptly brushed aside allegations of any wrong-doing, wondering why the Congress was raking up an old controversy.
"This matter is already in the court, no one from the Congress appears there (in court). They should if they are so serious about this," BJP leader Nirmala Sitharaman said. Thakur also rubbished allegations of any wrong-doing.
Anurag Thakur, who is currently the BCCI secretary, was the president of HPCA when the land for the stadium was given on lease.
"The transfer of land smacks of "blatant constitutional impropriety, patent conflict of interest, glaring misuse of office, usurpation of public property and duping of public exchequer," Ramesh said.
Further, the 16 acres of allotted land was referred to a company called Aveda for commercial purposes in gross violation of contract, the Congress leader said.
The Congress leader said Thakur also changed the HPCA from a society to a company to avoid accountability
This is the latest front in the Congress' attack against the BJP, after it stalled Parliament demanding the resignations of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje over the controversy involving former IPL chief Lalit Modi and Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Chouhan over the Vyapam recruitment scam.
"I wonder if Prime Minister Narendra Modi's promise of acting against corruption would apply retrospectively in this case," Ramesh said seeking action against Thakur who is a Lok Sabha MP and president of BJP's yuva morcha wing.
To a question as to why the Congress ruled government in the state was not acting against Dhumal, he said the "government will do what is required to be done".
( With PTI inputs)