A comptroller and auditor general (CAG) report tabled in the Haryana assembly on Wednesday blamed the previous Congress government of “undue favours” to Robert Vadra, party president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law, in big-ticket land deals.
Vadra’s M/s Skylight Hospi-tality made substantial profit by selling prime Gurgaon land to realty giant DLF Universal Ltd after chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s government accorded in-principle approval of transfer of licence in April 2012, says the official auditor’s report for 2013-14.
“The town and country planning department neither at the time of granting in-principle approval nor at the time of formal approval for transfer of licences ensured that the net profit beyond 15% of the total cost accrues to the public exchequer.
This enabled the developers to earn huge profits merely by selling the land, while the government had to forgo a sizeable amount,” the report says.
No discussion was held in the assembly on the reports presented in compact discs.
“In case of M/s Skylight Hospitality Pvt Ltd, the land was sold to its collaborator, M/s DLF at 7.73 times the original cost after in-principle approval of transfer of licence,” the CAG report says.
The CAG questioned why a distinction was made for Vadra’s company by the Hooda government, while granting a colonisation licence in Sector 83 (Shikohpur) of Gurgaon.
Hindustan Times was the first to report this issue.
The CAG said projects, including that of Vadra’s company, were sanctioned commercial licences for less than 2 acres, a norm for setting up a commercial colony in the hyper-potential zone of Gurgaon.
The rationale of the town and country planning department was that if applied land was contiguous with the already licensed area, then the area of both the contiguous plots is to be taken into account.
In accordance with the final development plan of Gurgaon-Manesar 2021, the area falling under roads was not to be calculated towards net planned area and only benefit towards floor area ratio was to be given for transferring such land.
“While this principle was applied in 12 other cases, in case of Skylight Hospitality the whole area was indicated. It is not clear why such a distinction was made,” the CAG report says.
The CAG said the Gurgaon site was not approachable in the case of Skylight Hospitality.
However, the department decided to waive this condition while granting licence in March 2008 on the ground that approach road would be taken by the licensee through the plotted colony of Onkareshwar and Mark Buildtech in collaboration with Vatika Landbase Pvt Ltd.