Hooda accuses Haryana’s BJP government of revenge politics

Chandigarh : After the Haryana vigilance bureau booked him in a land re-allotment case, former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Sunday termed it “revenge politics” by the state’s BJP government.

“This government has done nothing for the people’s welfare. They are only indulging in ‘badla’ (revenge) and ‘badli’ (transfers),” Hooda told the media here.

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The vigilance bureau on May 5 registered a case of cheating, breach of trust and corruption against Hooda, the then chairman of Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), officials of HUDA and office-bearers of Associated Journals Ltd. (AJL), the promoters of The National Herald newspaper, on charge of illegally re-allotting a prime plot to the AJL in Sector 6 of Panchkula near here in 2005.

Leader of opposition in Haryana assembly Abhay Singh Chautala had on May 3 demanded registration of a criminal case against Congress-linked AJL and Hooda in the case.

In a letter to Haryana Chief Minister Manohal Lal Khattar, the Indian National Lok Dal leader said the trustees and directors of AJL and Hooda should be booked under the Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Corruption Act.

Referring to media reports regarding plot number C-17 at Sector 6 in Panchkula, he said the 3,360 square metre land was re-allotted to AJL on June 29, 2005.

The plot was allotted to AJL in 1982 but resumed in 1996 after the company failed to construct a building on it.

“No sooner was the Congress voted to power in 2005, the then chief minister Hooda initiated the process of restoring the plot to AJL on a representation made on the firm’s behalf by one of the trustees,” Chautala said in the letter.

Documents showed that Haryana’s joint legal remembrancer Jagdeep Jain had on August 17, 2005, strongly opposed the plot’s re-allotment. However, Hooda overruled Jain’s note.

Hooda, on his part, has defended his action, saying there was “no wrongdoing and that everything was done as per the procedure”.

After the re-allotment, the AJL completed the construction on the plot. However, the proposed ‘Navjivan’ newspaper is yet to see the light of the day.