BJP demands CBI inquiry into plethora of BDA scams

BJP demands CBI inquiry into plethora of BDA scams

'Agency allotted Rs 150-cr land to firm run by biz partner of CM's son'

The BJP has demanded a CBI inquiry into varied scams in the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) such as allotment of alternative sites to a company in which Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s son is a partner.

The party cited several instances of “nepotism, favouritism and corruption” by the BDA on behalf of the powers that be and questioned the manner in which the agency allots alternative sites to influential people.

The party demanded an explanation from Siddaramaiah, besides legal action against BDA Commissioner T Sham Bhatt and his immediate transfer. Since Siddaramaiah heads the BDA, he is “directly responsible” for the scams, the BJP said.

According to the opposition party, the BDA allotted 2.19 acres of land in Hebbal, a prime locality in northern Bengaluru, to Dr C M Rajesh Gowda, the business partner of Siddaramaiah’s son Yathindra.

Land worth Rs 150 crore
Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru on Friday, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Jagadish Shettar said the land was worth at least Rs 150 crore.
The land was allotted to Gowda in exchange for land acquired from Gowda’s firm Shantha Industrial Enterprises in survey numbers 174 and 175 in Kethamaranahalli, Mahalakshmi Layout.

This was done with the “single objective of favouring Gowda”, he suggested.
The chief minister is already facing the heat for reportedly violating the code of conduct for ministers by allowing his son’s firm — co-owned by Gowda — to set up a pathological laboratory at the PMSSY super-speciality hospital on the Victoria Hospital campus in Bengaluru. Shettar demanded a judicial inquiry into that matter as well.

‘45 sites and bribe’
The BJP leader also accused former JD(S) corporator A M Hanumanthegowda of
“bribing” officials to allot him 45 alternative sites valued at Rs 64 crore in Janabharathi Layout in exchange for his “dubious” land acquired for extension of Sir M Visvesvaraya Layout.

Shettar suggested the BDA allotted alternative sites in several prime localities of the city in a “similar manner” and lost crores of rupees. He produced a list of 35 such alternative sites to the extent of 1.53 lakh sq ft (30x40 sites) allotted by the BDA.

He also cited nine instances where rules were “flouted” to allot corner sites as alternative sites in Banashankari 6th Stage.

Sites were “illegally” denotified in Kempegowda (77 acres) and Arkavathi (544 acres) layouts.

“The entire scam runs into lakhs of crores of rupees. It’s as big as 2G or coal scam. Valuable land has been allotted as alternative sites,” he said.

Shettar also demanded that the government release the findings of a report submitted by retired IAS officer H Shashidhar who carried a detailed investigation into the violations.

He said several middlemen were involved in the scams.

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