Manesar land scam: HSIIDC had opposed issuing of licenses to builders, says CBI

As per the chargesheet, the builders bought 459 acres from the farmers, out of which licenses were illegally issued on 260 acres.

india Updated: Feb 11, 2018 15:57 IST
Vivek Gupta
Vivek Gupta
Hindustan Times, Panchkula
Manesar land scam,HSIIDC,CBI
CBI staff taking an almirah into the CBI court to store the documents related to the Manesar land scam. (HT File )

The Central Bureau of Investigation’s probe into the Rs 1,500-crore Manesar land scam revealed that the Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HSIIDC), which was involved in land acquisition for the controversial Manesar industrial model township (IMT) in Gurgaon, had opposed the issuance of commercial licenses to builders on the land bought from distressed farmers at throwaway prices between 2004 and 2007.

HT Explainer | Manesar Land scam: Hooda, aides accused of misuse of acquisition Act

“HSIIDC raised red flag in response to the feedback sought by Haryana town and country planning department after builders applied for licenses to construct residential and commercial units, in 2006,” said an official of the central probe agency, who is privy to the chargesheet filed in the special CBI court last week in which former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, his former aides and realty firms have been charged with criminal conspiracy, fraud and corruption for their involvement in the wscam. The officials added that despite HSIIDC’s dissenting note, which was in sync with the government norms, the town and country planning department did not reject the builders’ files.

“The department put their applications on hold and finally issued licenses after land acquisition proceedings were officially dropped following a decision by Hooda government on August 24, 2007,” he added.

As per the chargesheet, the builders bought 459 acres from the farmers, out of which licenses were illegally issued on 260 acres. Retired bureaucrat SS Dhillion, who was the then director of town and country planning department, has already been named as an accused along with Hooda’s former principal secretaries Chattar Singh and MLTayal in the chargesheet that runs over 80,000 pages.

As per the chargesheet, the market value of the farmers’ land was close to Rs 4 crore per acre but the builders forced them to sell the land at a meagre rate of Rs 20-25 per lakh, saying that the government will not pay much during their acquisition.

Without going into specific details, CBI spokesperson RK Gaud said that the facts gathered during investigation have already been mentioned in the chargesheet and the same have been submitted in the designated court. The matter is subjudice now. The court will take up the matter on February 26.

First Published: Feb 11, 2018 15:52 IST