'Land sold to society at Rs 6.87 per square feet'

In what is being termed as the maiden scam of the Congress government in the State, 2.35 acres of revenue land at Vasanthapura in the City was sold to the BDA Employees' Welfare Association on June 4, 2013 at a mere Rs 6.87 per square foot.

Addressing a press conference here on Monday, B M Shivakumar, president, Jayaprakash Narayan Vichara Vedike said the Association was given 42 acres of land at Doddakallasandra and Lingadheeranahalli as a gift to the BDA employees under the Suvarna Karnataka scheme in 2006. It was the same year when the Arkavathy Layout was formed, he said.

At the time of allotment, there were 712 members including officers on deputation. “In addition to sites of 60`x40` and 30`x40` dimension, smaller sites of 15`x40` and 20`x40` were also formed. Although there were enough sites to be distributed among the existing members, 20 members did not get the sites because the sites were given to outsiders,” alleged Shivakumar.  Among those who were denied sites, four have died while three have retired from service.

“Counting the dead and the retired people as among those who did not get sites, two acres and 35 guntas of land was sanctioned. The sale deed executed on June 4 this year shows that the total amount paid against the grant of the 2.35 acres was Rs 8,60,675, which means that the land was given for a mere Rs 6.87 per sqft,” said Shivakumar.

This layout was part of the Banashankari 5th stage layout which was announced in 1996 but was formed ten years later for the reasons best known to the BDA officials, he added.

BDA reaction

BDA commissioner T Sham Bhat refuted the allegations made by Shivakumar. He said that on April 19, 2006 the government ordered giving 45 acres to the Association. In return, the Association deposited the entire amount of Rs 1.26 crore in two instalment with the first instalment being Rs 88 lakh.

“The land was given to the Association in five installments- 27 acres on November 9, 2006; seven acres on June 12, 2007; five acres on November 14, 2007; three acres on June 28, 2011 and finally 2.35 acres on June 4, 2013,” said Bhat.

He did not have any answer to the question of why in the latest sale deed executed on June 4, 2013, Rs 8.61 lakh was mentioned and not Rs 1.26 crore paid in bulk in 2006-07. He said he would go through the records and clarify. However, he could not be reached for clarifications.

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