Bhupinder Singh Hooda: Industrial Plot allotment scandal: Former Haryana CM Hooda charge-sheeted by ED
The agency has filed a charge sheet in the Panchkula Industrial Plot Allotment scandal. The case involves allocation of 14 Industrial plots worth Rs. 30.34 crores to the acquaintances of Hooda in the year 2013.
The federal agency launched an investigation on an FIR registered by the State Vigilance Bureau, Haryana in the year 2015. The said FIR was transferred to CBI which registered a case in 2016 on charges of alleged illegal allotment of 14 industrial plots in Phase – 1 & 2 of Panchkula, Haryana.
The agency, in a press release, said that further probe revealed that as a result of criminal conspiracy, the then Chief Minister, Haryana and ex-officio Chairman, HUDA, four retired IAS officers and other office bearers of HUDA, Panchkula, Haryana illegally benefited pre-selected acquaintances of the then CM, Haryana by allotting them 14 Industrial Plots denying allotment to more worthy applicants.
Besides Hooda, four retired IAS officers namely Dharam Pal Singh Nagal (the then Chief Administrator, HUDA); Surjit Singh (the then Administrator, HUDA; Subhash Chandra Kansal (the then Chief Controller of Finance, HUDA) and Narinder Kumar Solanki (the then Zonal Administrator, Faridabad Zone, HUDA) and other HUDA official Bharat Bhushan Taneja (the then Superintendent, HUDA) and all the 14 allottees and beneficiaries of the Industrial Plots Allocation case have been named in the charge sheet by ED.
The agency has alleged that it has come out during the investigation that the price fixed for the subject allotment were kept 4-5 times below circle rate and 7-8 times market rate. The criteria for allotment was altered 18 days after the last date of application and when all the applicant data was in possession of HUDA. “Criteria was altered in such a way to favour the pre – selected applicants by increasing the discretion at the hands of the interview committee. The entire interview process was vitiated and compromised as no formal record of marks allocation was kept”, the agency has claimed.
It added “hence, worthy applicants were driven out of merit and applicants who were closely connected to Bhupender Singh Hooda, in terms of his personal capacity and also in terms of the political party he belongs to, were allotted these plots. All 14 industrial plots stand attached as per the provisions of PMLA, 2002 by Enforcement Directorate in August 2019 and the attachment was confirmed by the PMLA Adjudicating Authority in February 2020”.