Haryana IAS officer cancels Robert Vadra land mutation,transferred by state govt

Khemka orders probe into companies in which Vadra is involved as vendor or vendee,since Jan 2005.

Written by Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published: October 16, 2012 9:10 am

Haryana’s senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka,before relinquishing the charge as Director General,Consolidation of Holdings,has cancelled the mutation of a 3.531 acres plant of land in Shikhopur village,Manesar,Gurgaon that Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra had sold to real estate giant DLF Limited for Rs 58 crore.

Khemka was shunted on the orders issued by Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Friday. However,he completed the probe,cancelled the mutation and left the charge yesterday. Khemka,last week had alleged “malafide reasons” behind his transfer.

While cancelling the mutation of land sold by Vadra to DLF,Khemka has also specifically named companies including Sky Light Realty,Sky Light Hospitality,Real Earth Estates,Blue Breeze Trading,Artex and North India IT Parks,which need to be probed. 

“Under-valuation of property registered in the registering offices of the state leads to loss of revenues to the state government. In view of the questions raised in reputed national dailies and to clear the fair name of the Registering Offices in Haryana,I,Ashok Khemka,IAS,Inspector General of Registration,Haryana,consider it fit and appropriate to order that the Deputy Commissioners-cum-Registrars of the four districts of Gurgaon,Faridabad,Palwal and Mewat shall inspect all documents from 1st day of January,2005 and till date by or on behalf of Shri Robert Vadra or his companies in the capacity of either vendor or vendee and compile such list and transmit to this office for examination. They shall estimate the real value of the property conveyed through the registered documents and in case of under-valuations,the matter shall be referred to the Collector under Section 47-A of The Indian Stamps Act for correct assessment of the stamp duty payable,” Khemka’s order (copy with Indian Express) reads.

Khemka,in his enquiry report (copy with Indian Express),said,“As per the records of one property,M/s Sky Light Hospitality had purchased Khasra No 730 (area 3.53 acres) of village Shikhopur (Hadbast No. 160),district Gurgaon vide sale deed no. 4928,dated 12.2.2008 for Rs. 7.5 crores (mutation no. 3803,dated 13.2.2008). This property was resold to M/s DLF Universal for Rs 58 crore vide sale deed no. 1435 dated 18.09.2012 (mutation no. 4513 dated 20.09.2012) after obtaining Letter of Intent (LOI)/License from the Director/ Town and Country Planning,Haryana on 28.03.2008,subsequently renewed on 18.1.2011 for 2.701 acres. The village of Shikhopur (Hadbast No. 160) of district Gurgaon was re-notified u/s 14(1) under the East Punjab Holdings (Consolidation and Prevention of Fragmentation) Act,1948 on 5th August,2011. Sale of the property on 18.09.2012 during the pendency of the consolidation proceedings without the sanction of the Consolidation Officer was against the provisions of section 30 of Consolidation Act,ibid. The mutation no. 4513 sanctioned on 20.09.2012 by the Assistant Consolidation Officer was also without jurisdiction,since he is not a Revenue Officer under the Punjab Land Revenue Act.”

Raising eyebrows on the manner in which Vadra entered into an agreement to sell the property to DLF,Khemka’s enquiry report reads,“If M/s Sky Light Limited suppressed the fact that it had entered into a sale agreement of the property with DLF before the renewal of the license then the department ought to be taking action against the former for suppressing facts. But if Vadra had indeed informed the department about his entering into agreement to sell the land to DLF on June 3,2008 (when the first installment was paid to Vadra’s company),it is unfathomable how the department could renew the license in 2011.”

While cancelling the mutation,Khemka in his order,issued yesterday,mentioned,“A mutation no. 4513 was sanctioned without jurisdiction on 20.09.2012 to give effect to the sale deed no. 1435 dated 18.09.2012 by the Assistant Consolidation Officer,Gurgaon,who is not a revenue officer. Only a revenue officer as defined in the Punjab Land Revenue Act is competent to sanction mutations. Under the circumstances,as described above,I hereby set aside the mutation no. 4513,dated 20.09.2012 of village Shikhopur (Hadbast No. 160),district Gurgaon,giving effect to the sale deed no. 1435 dated 18.09.2012 on the ground that the Assistant Consolidation Officer,who had sanctioned the mutation was not competent to do so”.

Highlights of enquiry report

*The registration of the property was “not proper” because the estate of Shikhopur was notified for consolidation in August 2011. Such transfer/sale of property during the pendency of consolidation proceedings,without the approval of Consolidation Officer is not allowed.

*Permission given to Vadra by the Town and Country Planning,Haryana,also violated the provisions of Consolidation Act.

*February 12,2008 – The land was bought by Vadra’s company Sky Light Hospitality for Rs 7.5 crore,and the mutation was done the next day

*March 28,2008 – The Town and Country Planning Department of Haryana issued Vadra’s company a license to develop 2.701 acres of the land into a housing colony.

*January 18,2011 – The license was subsequently renewed

*September 18,2012 – The sale deed was registered for Rs 58 crores

The transaction details,money paid by DLF Universal Limited to Sky Light Hospitality Limited

*Rs 5 crore vide cheque no. 441242 dated June 3,2008,drawn on ICICI Bank Ltd.

*Rs 10 crore vide cheque no. 350411 dated March 27,2009,drawn on ICICI Bank Ltd.

*Rs 35 crore vide cheque no. 457201 dated October 7,2009,drawn on ICICI Bank Ltd.

*Rs 8 crore vide DD/PO no. 283439 dated July 25,2012 drawn on ICICI Bank Ltd. 

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