BJP poses questions to CM over renting out Holly Lodge

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Shimla
  • Updated: Aug 05, 2015 21:28 IST

Two days after Arun Dhumal, the younger son of former chief minister Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), alleged that Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh's ancestral residence in Shimla, Holly Lodge, was rented out to a firm working in the Miyar hydel project, the BJP has posed questions to the CM seeking clarifications.

Party legislators Hansraj, Vinod Kumar, Suresh Kashyap and Baldev Tomar said Virbhadra should tell the people of the state whether he was aware of the agreement to rent out Holly Lodge. They questioned if the house was rented out to the firm, why wasn't any official of the firm occupying the house despite the hefty rent?

"Besides, when the house was in Virbhadra's name, how could his wife Pratibha Singh rent out the property?" they questioned.
They further asked the CM why the government had failed to recover `26 crore from the firm in lieu of cutting down trees for the hydel project.

Stating that this was a serious issue that needed to be probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the MLAs asked the CM why a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act should not be registered against him and Pratibha?

BJP slams govt for power cuts

The BJP on Wednesday hit out at the state government for the "quavering" power distribution system across the state.

BJP state president Satpal Singh Satti said power generation was on its peak in Himachal, yet the state electricity board was imposing power cuts leaving consumers harrowed. "Industries, farmers and consumers, especially in the plains, are being harassed due to deliberate power cuts," Satti said, in a press statement issued here.

Satti said the government could not claim to provide 24 hours electricity in any district. "These days power generation is on its peak. Hence by imposing cuts, the government is selling power to other states to earn profit," he alleged.

"Hydel projects in Himachal generate 9,500 MW power, while the state's requirement is 8,000 MW, leaving surplus power for sale. Despite that, power cuts are frequent in the state. The matter will be raised in the upcoming monsoon session," Satti added.

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