Bhupinder Singh Hooda fails in bid to block report on Dhingra probe into land deals

Hooda withdrew his plea after the court said it had no jurisdiction in the matter.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published:April 28, 2017 4:26 am
Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Dhingra probe, robert vadra, land acam, hooda land scam, Punjab and Haryana HC, S N Dhingra report, land allotmnet, gurgaon land allotment, land licences scam, DLF land scam, gurgaon DLF, indian express news, india news, economics times, latest news Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda. (Express file photo)

FORMER HARYANA Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda Thursday failed in his bid to get the Punjab and Haryana High Court to issue an order restraining The Economic Times from purportedly publishing the contents of the Justice S N Dhingra report on alleged irregularities in allotment of land licences in Gurgaon.

Hooda withdrew his plea after the court said it had no jurisdiction in the matter.

Among the deals scrutinised by the Dhingra Commission were those related to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra, his company Skylight Hospitality and real estate major DLF.

On September 1, 2016, The Indian Express had reported that the Dhingra Commission, constituted by the Haryana government in May 2015 to probe grant of commercial licences in four villages of Gurgaon to real estate companies, including M/s Skylight Hospitality, had found “gross procedural irregularities in allotment of licences”.

Hours after the court turned down Hooda’s plea, Vadra’s wife Priyanka Gandhi Vadra issued a statement that the source of funds for the land she bought and sold in Faridabad “has no relationship whatsoever with Shri Robert Vadra’s finances and/or Skylight Hospitality and no relationship whatsoever with DLF.”

Hooda, the Congress leader from Rohtak, is being probed by the state vigilance department and CBI for allegedly manipulating land allotment rules and regulations in Gurgaon during his two consecutive-term tenure as chief minister from 2005-2014.

In his report, Justice Dhingra, sources said, indicted certain senior officials who were posted in the Town and Country Planning (T&CP) department and the office of the Chief Minister and recommended registration of FIRs against officials in some cases of grant of commercial licences.

However, before the state government could table the report in Vidhan Sabha — a mandatory requirement under Commission of Inquiry Act — Hooda approached the high court challenging the constitution of the commission.

Responding to Hooda’s plea, Haryana Advocate General Baldev Raj Mahajan repeatedly gave undertakings in court that the report’s contents would not be made public. The court subsequently ordered an interim stay and barred the the state government from releasing the report.

In Thursday’s plea, Hooda’s counsel stated: “It has also been reliably learnt that a newspaper i.e. Economic Times… is going to publish tomorrow a news item based upon and containing contents of the Commission of Inquiry Report dated 31.08.2016, publication of which has already been restrained on the categoric assurance of the learned Advocate General, Haryana.”

The press release issued by Priyanka Gandhi’s office stated: “Six years prior to the purported “land deal involving Skylight Hospitality” on April 28, 2006, Smt. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra purchased 40 Kanal 00 Marla (5 acres) of agricultural land in Village Amipur, Tehsil Faridabad, District Faridabad in Haryana.

“The land was purchased for a total purchase price of Rs 15,00,000 paid for entirely by cheque, which is the equivalent of Rs 3,00,000 per acre. The source of funds for the aforesaid purchase was rental income of Smt. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra from property inherited by her from her grandmother Smt. Indira Gandhi. The source of funds for this or any other property acquired by Smt. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has no relationship whatsoever with Shri Robert Vadra’s finances and/or Skylight Hospitality and no relationship whatsoever with DLF.”

“…Smt. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra resold the said land to the original vendor pursuant to a right of first refusal on February 17, 2010 (four years later) for a sale price of Rs 80,00,000 entirely by cheque which is the equivalent of Rs 16,00,000 (Rupees Sixteen Lacs) per acre and was the prevailing market rate at that time.”

Last year, The Indian Express had reported that the Dhingra Commission is said to have cited several instances of approvals and plans being changed to benefit builders. “In many cases, real estate companies were allowed to get revised plans approved while in some cases, the policy was changed to grant benefit to the chosen companies. The files show a clear pattern of senior officers in the office of the previous Chief Minister (Bhupinder Singh Hooda) writing on file,” sources said.

Sources said the files perused by the Commission showed that master plans were changed — in some cases, more than once — to allegedly benefit companies. The Commission also found instances of the government sitting on files seeking grant of licences for unusually long periods.

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  1. I
    Indian
    Apr 28, 2017 at 11:32 am
    The process of buying land at 15 Lakh and selling it back to original owner for 80 Lakh after FOUR YEARS, thereby earning a profit of Rs 65 Lakh is an excellent way to BRIBE the ROYAL FAMILY of India - The GAN-DHIS. Many more such dealings could have happened.
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    1. U
      Urmila Duhan
      Apr 28, 2017 at 9:31 am
      the report doesn't say, neither priyanka vadra mentions whether the property was purchased by her at the market rates or below that price.
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      1. M
        Mahender Goriganti
        Apr 28, 2017 at 9:04 am
        Get ready to go to jail along with Wadra and Priayanka.
        Reply
        1. K
          KS KUMAR
          Apr 28, 2017 at 8:05 am
          Why details of land deal of Priyanka were not published by media earlier. How come she got so much of profit within 4 years.
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            NamwarSingh
            Apr 28, 2017 at 7:30 am
            Jats always owned land in Haryana and Hooda had nothing to do with this. Only the dark Punjabi (Jewish-linked) does not like the Jat. The Jat is brave and noble. I agree with Sengupt that thieves in BJP and Congress should be locked up.
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            1. N
              Naresh Gupta
              Apr 28, 2017 at 10:56 am
              Jats owned land then also they want reservations and they burnt properties of Punjabis burnt thier shops looted thier shops Jats are nobal my FOOT!
              Reply
            2. S
              Sengupt
              Apr 28, 2017 at 7:22 am
              Why has not the BJP acted on Robert Vadhra? Is the BJP and Congress involved in teamwork when it comes to theft? There are only some elements in BJP and even less in Congress who are honest. Also there is surely a degree of the Jewish Lobby penetration in the BJP and also deep Jewish media pemetration in the Indian media.
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              1. M
                Mahender Goriganti
                Apr 28, 2017 at 9:06 am
                I can see through your Jihadi color
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                1. M
                  manu
                  Apr 28, 2017 at 11:32 am
                  I doubt if its your real name.However, let's accept the fact that the courts are never in hurry to finish any case on an urgency.Things go by procedures. My other fellows regarding Jats n Non Jats, there is nothing to fight amongs urself.As a few families of politicians have been making hay.Please don't get emotionally involve on caste lines.There is nothing like Jat or non Jat about it.Let the justice takes its course
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                  Lalit Mohan
                  Apr 28, 2017 at 7:12 am
                  I went with my father for admission in govt school to study for an approach to hooda office but he denied us because I am a brahmin. So this is the kind of sickness these people have.
                  Reply
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                    Sheik Mohamed
                    Apr 28, 2017 at 7:06 am
                    If really he had not committed any irregularity to please cong(I)'s high command for allowing him to continue as CM of Haryana in the past, why he should afraid of publishing this news item?
                    Reply
                    1. A
                      Ashok Saran
                      Apr 28, 2017 at 6:55 am
                      to what extent lust for land acquisition can go! one family was in a spree for acquisition of land in neighbouring states around delhi! even after in possesion of a vast tract of land in delhi in the name of samadhis and memorials for their family members the lust for land continues!
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                        Umesh Kumar Dash
                        Apr 28, 2017 at 6:36 am
                        This is what called nepotism, where prior understanding with government of day, that m ive development programme will be undertaken for quick rise of prices. This can be possible when son in law of dynasty is buying and selling, so that a 10 cl p can be multi millionaire.
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                          Ghosh
                          Apr 28, 2017 at 5:26 am
                          Hooda is a man of honor and a loyal person. He has to be careful that the Punjabi has entered Haryana. Also the Punjabi is strongly backed by the Jews as the Jews and Punjabi are very similar that is money-minded. Aso the Punjabi does not follow the Bhagwad Gita and will marry any one for materialistic gain like their Jewish friends. Bhagwad Gita Chapter 1: On the destruction of a tribe the ancient virtue of the tribe and family is lost; with the loss of virtue, vice and impiety overwhelm the w of a race. From the influence of impiety the females of a family grow vicious; and from women that are become vicious are born the spurious caste called Varna-Sankara. Corruption of caste is a gate of , ...
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                            Lalit Mohan
                            Apr 28, 2017 at 7:15 am
                            Everywhere in haryana you see 80 of land in sectors have been allotted to jaats only during hooda's reign. And you say he is honest
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