Strengthened by B S Yeddyurappa's resignation as Karnataka chief minister following graft charges, Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday demanded the head of Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda for "illegal" denotification and lease of land in Gurgaon to Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust.
BJP chief Nitin Gadkari charged Congress president Sonia Gandhi, her son and party general secretary Rahul and daughter Priyanka Vadhra of taking more than five acres of panchayat land in Haryana's Ullahawas village on lease for a rent of Rs 3 lakh per annum.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Vadhra are trustees of the charitable body.
"All laws were set aside by the Hooda government to give this land worth Rs 50 crore on lease to the Gandhi family. The land was denotified before it was leased to Sonia Gandhi, Rahul and daughter Priyanka. Why this double standard for the Gandhi family?" Gadkari questioned.
"A letter dated 6.12.2010 signed by superintendent for financial commissioner and principal secretary of Urban Estate Department to administrator Haryana urban development authority informs that the state has taken the decision to release the land of gram panchayat falling in village Ullawas of Sector 58-63 and 65-67 of Gurgaon has been leased out to Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust for establishment of eye hospital and one research centre," said Gadkari as he waved documents at a hurriedly called press meet at the party headquarters on Ashok Road.
"If Yeddyurappa had to resign due to denotification of a land, the Hooda government should also resign for denotifying this property," Gadkari said. He insisted that his party will appeal to the Haryana high court that all aspects of this deal should be investigated by a Special Investigation Team. He also demanded that a retired judge conduct a probe into all land acquired by the Hooda government during its tenure.
"We also demand that the land scams in Uttar Pradesh should be inquired into. Rahul Gandhi did a 'padyatra' (march) there," Gadkari said, alluding to the Congress leader having different sets of norms for UP and Haryana.
Gadkari maintained that during the court proceedings when the judge wanted to know names of the trustees of Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust, the lawyers were reluctant to name Sonia Gandhi, Rahul and Priyanka.
"When we want land for the Deen Dayal Trust there is a hue and cry but not for this trust. Why this drama about land acquisitions? On the one hand, they are fighting for land rights and on the other they are taking away this land. The matter should be investigated," Gadkari said.
Asked if BJP would raise this issue in Parliament, Gadkari said he has raised his voice on this matter and his party would bring it up in the House.
With inputs from PTI