Senior BJP leader and former Himachal chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal appears undeterred by the state vigilance bureau's move to ask the Central Bureau of Investigation to probe the case relating to properties owned by the Dhumals following a complaint filed by a lawyer. “I've no properties in any part of the country except those shown in my statement to the Election Commission during the state elections process, he told reporters on Wednesday.
He said he was “amused” to know through the media that he had vast properties not only in Himachal Pradesh but also in major cities in other states. He asked the state government to identify such properties that were not in his knowledge and confiscate them. “The state government's move is politically motivated and intended to harm me,” he added.
The BJP leader said since the Lokayukta was the competent authority for probing the cases of corruption against the politicians and government officials in Himachal Pradesh, the state government should hand over the matter to the Lokayukta on “priority basis”. Replying to a question about the vigilance bureau's request to the CBI to take over the case, he said he was not bothered about it. “Let the CBI or even the FBI (of the United States) inquire into my properties,” he remarked. Dhumal, however, warned those persons that were filing false complaints against him and his family would not be spared once the enquiries were completed. “Those responsible for filing such complaints have themselves amassed properties worth several crores of rupees in the state and abroad and they are afraid of that and that's why they've started a campaign to defame me,” he added.
He also appealed to the media not to file “wrong stories” against him as he would file a criminal cases against those who had been trying to “frame” him in “false cases”. “Earlier too when I had filed a defamation case against former Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh in 2003 the Punjab Congress leader had denied press reports and had entirely blamed the media for publishing reports in his name without his knowledge,” he added.
Talking about the central university location issue, Dhumal once again reiterated the proposed central university in the state would be located in two places, Dehra and Dharamsala. “It's wrong to say all campuses of the proposed varsity will located in Dharamsala,” he added.
Dhumal told reporters the central forests & conservation ministry in its letter dated August 26, 2014 had clarified that land measuring 81.7916 hectares had been cleared in Dehra for the campus of the proposed central university. “The state government is trying to stall the project and is blaming the BJP unnecessarily for having at two separate campuses.
According to the initial plan, the varsity's head office will be located in Dharamsala and the other campuses in Dehra,” he added.
“It's a funny thing Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi complaining against me and Anurag Thakur, the party MP from Hamirpur, for fighting for the rights of our respective areas. It's not understood why the chief minister had written such a letter fully knowing all MPs and MLAs have the right to fight for genuine grievances of people in their respective areas, which is precisely what I had my son Anurag have been doing,” Dhumal said.