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Retired HC judge to probe land scams in Karnataka

The Karnataka government today appointed retired high court judge B Padmaraj to head the one-man Commission of Inquiry to probe land scams including denotification of lands in the state from January 1995 till date.
By HT Correspondent | PTI, Bangalore
UPDATED ON NOV 22, 2010 07:48 PM IST

The Karnataka government on Monday appointed retired high court judge B Padmaraj to head the one-man Commission of Inquiry to probe land scams including denotification of lands in the state from January 1995 till date.

Illegalities in allotment of 'G' category sites by the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) under discretionary quota enjoyed by chief ministers, allotment of industrial sites by Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB), besides denotification of lands acquired by these two agencies will come under the probe, according to the terms of reference issued by the government.

The probe also encompasses denotification of land notified by the Karnataka Housing Board (KHB) and Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) following allegations of irregularities in denotifying lands that have surfaced against the B S Yeddyurappa-led BJP government.

Though Yeddyurappa had announced that irregularities in allotment of KIADB land and denotification of lands, besides in BDA from 1994 to till date would be brought under the probe, the government has chosen to order the inquiry from January 1, 1995. The Commission has been asked to complete its inquiry and give its report within one year.

The probe now covers the regimes of H D Devegowda, late J H Patel, S M Krishna, N Dharam Singh who led Congress-JDS coalition government, H D Kumaraswamy's JDS-BJP coalition ministry and that of the Yeddyurappa government.

The government has chosen to entrust the probe to a retired high court judge, though it had earlier said it would be under a retired Supreme Court judge.

The appointment comes at a time when BJP is reportedly considering easing out Yeddyurappa, who is facing allegations of corruption and land scam, from the chief ministership.

The government notification has said the commission will fix responsibility on the persons responsible for such illegalities. It would also suggest remedial measures to prevent any illegalities in these matters.

The commission shall have its headquarters at Bangalore and sittings at such places as it deems necessary, it said.

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