The Haryana government may have decided to hand over the cases of alleged “irregularities” in the land deals to the CBI now, but senior IAS officer Ashok Khemka had sought action in at least two cases about one-and-a-half-years back. In separate letters written to the Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and Chief Secretary DS Dhesi, Khemka had detailed how the land was released after initiating the acquisition process during the previous regime.
About the Rohtak case, Khemka had pointed out that even the Supreme Court had directed the Haryana government to enquire into the legality and bona fides of the action of the persons “responsible for illegally entertaining the applications of the builder and releasing the land to it when it had no title to the land on the date of the notification under Section 4 of the 1894 (Land Acquisition) Act and proceed against them in accordance with law”.
“The modus operandi of the scam perpetrated was similar to another land scam at Manesar, where an FIR is registered and currently under investigation by the CBI. In this case too, a criminal case be got registered and departmental action (be) initiated against the guilty public servants in the Departments of Town and Country Planning (colony licenses) and Urban Estates (land acquisitions and releases),” Khemka had mentioned in a letter to Dhesi on September 19, 2016.
Khemka had written to the CM about an alleged scam in Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HSIIDC)’s industrial workers’ housing scheme in Sectors 59 and 60 of Sonipat which allegedly took place in 2005 and 2008.
“The scam was more blatant than similar scams at Manesar and Rohtak,” he had stated. According to Khemka’s letter, the matter was brought to the notice of the Chief Secretary in 2015 when he had submitted reply to a chargesheet issued to him in connection with DLF-Vadra land deal case. Detailing the case, Khemka had stated that a notification under section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act was issued in 2005 for acquisition of 885 acres of land to develop residential sectors for HSIIDC’s industrial workers housing.
Khemka alleged that the licences were issued to a private company for developing a residential plotted colony after issuance of the section- 4 notification of the Land Acquisition Act. “The licence became the basis subsequently to release 313.525 acres of land causing wrongful benefits to the private coloniser,” alleged Khemka.
“Despite a written reference to the Chief Secretary on February 12, 2015, it seems the scamsters are being let off of the hook. Like in the Manesar land scam, a criminal case may be registered and departmental action taken against the then guilty officers of the Industries and Commerce and the Town and Country Planning Departments in the matter,” Khemka had mentioned in his letter sent to the Chief Secretary on October 10, 2016.
Sources said the government has already decided to hand over Rohtak case and separate case of Sonipat to the CBI and may also refer the HSIIDC case to the premier investigating agency in future.