Trouble is mounting for the Congress and senior party leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda. Justice (retd) SN Dhingra Commission of Inquiry has reportedly flagged several violations in granting licences for development of colonies in Haryana during the previous Bhupinder Singh Hooda government.
Emphasising that Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s conduct of giving “pecuniary advantage” to close associates comes under the purview of Prevention of Corruption Act, the Commission has called for a probe against the the then Haryana chief minister. The Dhingra Commission has recommended an audit by an independent agency and cancellation of those licences granted illegally.
Citing examples of how approvals for development of colonies were granted or denied in clear violation of law and laid-down procedures, Justice Dhingra Commission has indicted Hooda government for abuse of power and illegal gratification.
Hooda government in 2008 had granted licences to Robert Vadra’s Skylight Hospitality for building a colony in Gurgaon simply on the ground that the director of the firm was a VIP and the son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
Earlier the Dhingra Commission had discovered a land transaction undertaken by Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s daughter and Robert Vadra’s wife Priyanka Gandhi. Priyanka had bought 5 acres of agricultural land in Amipur village in Faridabad district of Haryana for Rs 15 lakh on April 28, 2006. That piece of land was resold to the original owner around four years later on February 17, 2010 at over five times the original price.
Justice (retd) SN Dhingra Commission of Inquiry was set up in May 2015 by the BJP government led by Manohar Lal Khattar. The Commission had submitted its report to Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar in August last year.
Even as the contents of the probe panel is still under wraps, Justice Dhingra has reportedly said that he has done his job and it is up to the courts to decide whether the report should be made public.
The Congress chose to challenge the constitutional validity of the Dhingra Commission and alleged that the BJP government had set up the Commission in “pursuit of a political vendetta”. “There are various irregularities with this Commission,” Hooda was quoted as saying.