Thursday, February 25, 2021

ED recordsdata chargesheet towards ex-Haryana CM Hooda, four retd IAS officers in money-laundering case

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The ED has filed a chargesheet towards former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, 4 retired IAS officers and a few others in a money-laundering case linked to alleged irregularities within the allocation of over a dozen industrial plots price greater than Rs 30 crore within the Panchkula space in 2013, officers mentioned on Tuesday.

The central probe company claimed that “worthy applicants were driven out of merit and applicants who were closely connected to Hooda, in terms of his personal capacity and also in terms of the political party he belongs to, were allotted these plots”.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) mentioned the plots had been allotted to “acquaintances of the then CM (Hooda)”.

The Haryana Vigilance Bureau booked a case in 2015 to probe these alleged irregularities and subsequently, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the ED filed their respective instances.

The company has named Hooda, retired IAS officers Dharam Pal Singh Nagal (the then chief administrator of the Haryana Urban Development Authority or HUDA), Surjit Singh (the then administrator of HUDA), Subhash Chandra Kansal (former chief controller of finance, HUDA), Narinder Kumar Solanki (former zonal administrator, Faridabad zone of HUDA), in addition to Bharat Bhushan Taneja (the then superintendent, HUDA) and all of the 14 allottees and beneficiaries of the economic plots within the chargesheet or the prosecution grievance.

The grievance, the ED mentioned, has been filed below varied sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) earlier than a particular courtroom in Panchkula.

The company mentioned its probe discovered that as “a result of a criminal conspiracy, the then chief minister of Haryana and ex-officio chairman of HUDA (Hooda), the retired IAS officers and other office-bearers of HUDA in Panchkula illegally benefitted pre-selected acquaintances of the then state CM by allotting them 14 industrial plots and denying allotment to more worthy applicants”.

The plots are situated in Panchkula and the allocation came about in 2013.

The ED mentioned it was discovered throughout its probe “that the price fixed for the subject allotment were kept four-five times below the circle rate and seven-eight times (higher than) the market rate”.

“The standards for allotment was altered 18 days after the final date of software and when all of the applicant information was within the possession of HUDA.

“The 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 ED alleged.

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