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CBI charges Atul Khanna,Brij Khanna with cheating,conspiracy

Durga das foundation: They constructed a school illegally on the land allotted for other purposes: Chargesheet

Written by Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published: July 29, 2013 5:08:30 am

The Central Bureau of Investigation has charged the directors of Durga Das Foundation (DDF) with having cheated,hatched conspiracy and used corrupt practices for constructing a school illegally on the land allotted for the purpose of cultural and social activities.

The investigating agency has charged the two directors of DDF — Atul Khanna and his father Brij Khanna — besides the Bharat Sevak Samaj. The agency filed a chargesheet in the CBI court on Friday.

The chargesheet mentions that the accused caused losses to the tune of crores of rupees to the government exchequer. DDF runs two elite schools — Strawberry Fields Kindergarten as well as the Strawberry World School — in Chandigarh. “Brij Khanna,Chairman,BSS; Atul Khanna,Director,DDF and M/s DDF and others entered into a criminal conspiracy to divest BSS of its right to use the premium site allotted to it by the Chandigarh Administration for cultural and beneficient purposes and converted the same for use by a family-owned trust by Brij Mohan Khanna,” notes the chargesheet.

According to the chargesheet,the land measuring one acre in Sector 24 was allotted to BSS in 1967 for the purpose of cultural and social activities at the rate of Rs 6 per square yard and additional acreage at the rate of Rs 4 per square yard. The chargesheet points out that without the approval of the UT Administration,in 1994 Durga Das Foundation was set up and under its aegis Strawberry Fields Kindergarten was started.

It was in the year 2010 that the CBI received a complaint from a city resident,Manpreet Sandhu,about irregularities in the setting up of the school. Brij Khanna and Atul Khanna were both on the Board of Directors of both BSS and DDF when BSS transferred the possession of the land to DDF for construction purposes.

SP (CBI) Vineet Brijlal says,“The chargesheet has been filed by CBI on charges of cheating and corruption. The land that was allotted to Bharat Sevak Samaj by the administration was without approval used for construction of a school. Charges have been framed against Atul Khanna,Brij Khanna and BSS.”

In 2011,the CBI had booked Aul Khanna and Brij Khanna on charges of causing loss to the government exchequer. Following this,the CBI conducted raids at the two schools.

In his complaint,Sandhu had alleged that the Chandigarh Administration had allowed DDF to increase the floor-area ratio of the school site at old rates.

As per the complaint,it was stated that the site was allotted allowing FAR of 0.25 and permissible ground coverage of 15 per cent at a premium of Rs 900 per square yards. The Durga Das Foundation made a request for enhancing the FAR to 0.50. This was approved by the Finance Department at old rates which was premium of Rs 1,800 per square yard.

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