Already facing a CBI probe into allegations relating to his income-tax returns and also a PIL filed in the Delhi High Court,Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh today faced fresh accusations of granting ‘undue favours’ to controversial hydel company of Vakamulla Chander Shekhar,the man who had advanced him a private loan of Rs 3.90 crore.
The allotment of the 15 MW Saikothi project to Delhi-based M/s Venture Energy Technologies was cancelled by the government due to false representation of facts in its papers submitted to Ministry of Power in 2005. But,soon after the project was restored to the company despite proposals having been turned down by the cabinet thrice.
Former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal’s son Arun Singh told a press conference here that the company still had a liability of Rs 58 lakh payable to the state government despite extensions given to the project — one of these as late as September 4,2013. The Chief Minister struck a deal with the promoters to get the loan from Chander Shekhar,Arun Singh alleged.
The Chief Minister,some months,back had confirmed having obtained the loan,which he asserts was duly reflected in the affidavit filed by his wife Pratibha Singh during the Mandi Lok Sabha bye-election in June 2013.
But Arun Singh alleged that “The loan was received in two instalments in July 2011 and November 2011 but never shown in the affidavit filed by Virbhadra Singh when he contested Assembly elections in 2012. It is clear that the CM filed a wrong affidavit. The Chief Minister must clear doubts on the loan?”
Arun Singh further alleged that the actual loan amount is not Rs 3.90 crore but Rs 4.50 crore as there is one entry of Rs 60 lakh in the bank account on February 27,2013,beside another Rs 2 crore deposited in the account of his son.
On the Saikothi project,Arun Singh quoted two official documents and one report of the Economics and Statistics Department to substantiate his charge that the project was cancelled due to gross misrepresentation of facts by the company. It was later allotted to HPSEB,yet the project remained with the company,and now given fresh extension bending all norms. That’s only because the promoters have given a ‘loan’ to the Chief Minister,he charged.