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Rediff.com  » News » Vadra gets clean chit in Haryana land deals

Vadra gets clean chit in Haryana land deals

April 22, 2013 17:23 IST

Virtually giving a clean chit to Robert Vadra in the controversial land deal with DLF, a Haryana government panel has held there was no undervaluation while rejecting senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka's charge of wrongdoing in the transaction.

Official sources said the three-member committee headed by Additional Chief Secretary Krishna Mohan said that Khemka had acted beyond the authority vested in him by cancelling the mutation of three-acre of land to DLF following the deal with Vadra, son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

When contacted, Mohan declined to comment on the issue saying they had submitted their report to the office of the Chief Secretary and it was for him to take further action on it.

Another member of the Committee Principal Secretary Rajan Gupta, also declined to make any comment on the report.

The sources said factual position in the case is different from the stand taken by Khemka, who as Director General Consolidation of Holdings and Land Records-cum-Inspector General of Registration, had ruled against Vadra.

Khemka had a day after his transfer on October 12 last year and three days before he actually relinquished charge had asked Deputy Commissioners of four districts of Gurgaon, Palwal, Faridabad and Mewat falling in NCR to "inspect all documents registered from 2005 on behalf of Vadra or his companies in the capacity of vendor (seller) and vendee (buyer)."

The committee was stated to have opined that there was no bungling in the land deals.

The committee was set up in October last year to go into the land deal involving Vadra's company and DLF in Haryana's Shikopur village, the mutation of which was cancelled by Khemka, alleging various irregularities.

Khemka had ordered cancellation of the mutation of the sale deed of over 3 acres of land in Gurgaon's Shikopur village in October last year. Vadra's Sky Light Hospitality had entered into the sale agreement with realty giant DLF for the sale of the land.

Khemka, who has been transferred 43 times in just two decades of service and a few days back to the post of secretary-archives, did not comment on the report.

The committee held that Khemka may have misused the revisionary powers of the state government.

It said Khemka, then Director General Consolidation of Holdings and Land Records-cum-Inspector General of Registration, applied his powers to the Punjab Land Revenue Act, 1883, under which he had no authority to act.

The IAS officer is also found on the wrong foot for cancelling the mutation on October 15, 2012, an "administratively improper" step since he stood transferred as Managing Director of the Haryana Seeds Development Corporation four days back and also for being allegedly selective in singling out a particular mutation.

It observes that under-transfer, Khemka should not have passed an important quasi judicial order cancelling the mutation on October 15.

The Committee has gone in depth into the issue by examining sale and purchase of properties, grant of letter of intent/licence, Change of Land Use (CLU), undervaluation of properties etc.

According to the report, "in-principle" approval for transfer of licence was granted in April last year by the Director, Town and Country Planning Department and the license was renewed till December last year, after which the sale deed was executed by Sky Light Hospitality in favour of DLF in September last year on the basis of which the (now cancelled) mutation was sanctioned by Additional Consolidation Officer, Gurgaon.

On October 26 last year, Vadra had been given a clean chit by Haryana government after an official probe which concluded there was no "undervaluation" or loss of revenue to the government.

The Deputy Commissioners of four districts of Haryana namely Gurgaon, Faridabad, Palwal and Mewat had inspected all documents registered in their respective districts from January 1, 2005 till October 2012 by or on behalf of Vadra or his companies in the capacity of either vendor or vendee and have certified that no deed has been found registered as undervalued, an statement had said earlier.

Khemka was shunted out as DG (Consolidation) after he cancelled the Rs 58 crore Vadra-DLF deal and also ordered an enquiry into all land deals of Vadra in four Haryana districts around Delhi since 2005.

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