New Delhi: In fresh trouble for former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the ED has registered a money laundering case against him and others in a case of alleged financial irregularities in acquisition of land in Gurgaon’s Manesar in which farmers were cheated to the tune of Rs. 1,500 crore.
The ED has filed a criminal complaint against the Congress leader based on a CBI FIR, under which the probe agency conducted searches in Haryana and the national capital last week. Officials said the Enforcement Directorate (ED) case has been made under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and the agency has begun identifying the “proceeds of crime” allegedly created illegally as a fallout of the corruption done in the case.
“Summons would be issued to the accused soon. The agency is also looking for assets created out of tainted funds to attach them under PMLA as part of the investigations,” they said.
The case pertains to CBI registering a case in this regard last year in September on allegations that private builders in conspiracy with unknown public servants of the Haryana government had purchased around 400 acres of land from farmers and land owners of village Manesar, Naurangpur and Lakhnoula in Gurgaon district at throw away prices, showing the threat of acquisition by the government, during August 27, 2004-August 24, 2007. It was alleged that a loss of Rs. 1,500 crore was caused to the land owners of village Manesar, Naurangpur and Lakhnoula of Gurgaon. During last week’s searches at Mr Hooda’s residence, CBI had claimed to have found “fund transaction details worth crores of rupees” which are now being scrutinised by the agency. The ED is expected to seek a copy of these documents from the CBI soon, in order to take its probe forward.
CBI alleged that initially the Haryana government had issued a notification under the Land Acquisition Act for acquiring land measuring about 912 acres for setting up an Industrial Model Township at villages Manesar, Naurangpur and Lakhnoula in Gurgaon. After that, all the land had allegedly been grabbed from the land owners by private builders at meager rates showing the threat of Government acquisition, CBI had said after registering the case. It is also alleged that an order was then passed by the the competent authority i.e. the Director of Industries on August 24, 2007 releasing this land from the acquisition process in violation of the government policy, in favour of the builders, their companies and agents, instead of the original land owners.
The CBI has alleged in its FIR that in the said manner, land measuring about 400 acres whose market value at that time was above Rs. four crore per acre approximately totalling about Rs. 1,600 crore approximately was allegedly purchased by the private builders and others from the innocent land owners for only about Rs. 100 crore.