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BJP protests ‘land scam’ worth crores by Ludhiana Improvement Trust, targets minister Ashu

On Thursday, hundreds of BJP workers — led by district BJP president Pushpinder Singal — entered the Ludhiana Improvement Trust — office premises after crashing through police barricades and put a lock on the gates of the trust's office.

By: Express News Service | Ludhiana |
Updated: September 10, 2021 12:58:04 am
Policemen stop as BJP workers try to jump inside the Improvement Trust complex during the protest. (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh)

Hundreds of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday broke police barricades and entered the office of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust in Ludhiana’s Feroze Gandhi Market to protest what they claimed was prime land in the city, worth crores, being sold at a throwaway price by the trust. The protesting BJP workers later locked up the main gate of the trust.

Protesting BJP leaders alleged that Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman, Raman Balasubramanium, and his political mentor Punjab Cabinet minister, Bharat Bhushan Ashu (also MLA Ludhiana west) sold prime land in Model Town Extension of Ludhiana via e-auction for Rs 96 crore, whereas the land was worth at least Rs 300 crore.

On Thursday, hundreds of BJP workers — led by district BJP president Pushpinder Singal — entered the Ludhiana Improvement Trust — office premises after crashing through police barricades and put a lock on the gates of the trust’s office.

Later, some Congress workers also reached the spot in support of minister Ashu and the Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman leading to a brief showdown and tension between both the groups, which didn’t escalate.

Singal said, ” Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman, Balasubramanium, who is a close aide of minister Bharat Bhushan, has sold prime land of the trust — measuring 3.79 acres — for a mere Rs 96 crore, when its actual market value was more than Rs 300 crore. The reserve price of the land in the trust’s e-auction was kept at Rs 91.86 crore only. They have cheated Punjab state exchequer of at least Rs 250 by selling it for peanuts.”

Singal said that this prime chunk of land located in Model Town Extension part-2 on Dugri road was worth at least Rs 2 lakh per square yard as per market rate, but the Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman, in connivance with the minister, sold it for a throwaway price and caused loss worth crores to the state exchequer.

Demanding immediate action against the Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman as well as the Cabinet minister, the BJP said that they will intensify their protests if legal action wasn’t initiated against the duo.

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