Haryana government chargesheets whistleblower Khemka

Haryana government chargesheets whistleblower Khemka

Accused of wrongfully cancelling Robert Vadra's land mutation

Whistleblower IAS officer Ashok Khemka was on Wednesday chargesheeted by the Haryana government, which accused him of wrongfully cancelling the mutation of land belonging to Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra in Gurgaon.

The mutation aimed at giving effect to a Rs 58-crore deal between Vadra and realty major DLF. The government has now charged him with damaging the reputation of the two parties.

Khemka, who was in New Delhi on Wednesday, was served the seven-page charge sheet in his absence at his residence in Chandigarh. He has been given 15 days to reply to the charge sheet. Khemka on Thursday said he would soon reply to the charges.

The 1991-batch IAS officer, who has been transferred 42 times in his 20-year career, has been in the line of fire ever since he cancelled the controversial mutation. The government is preparing to charge sheet Khemka in two other cases.
The charge sheet deals with the issue of alleged administrative misconduct. It states that Khemka did not relinquish his charge even after his transfer order was issued on October 11, 2012. He relieved charge of his office four days later, during which he cancelled the land deal with alleged ill-intention, it alleges. 

The charge sheet accuses Khemka of wrongly cancelling the mutation on the grounds that he neither had the jurisdiction to pass such an order nor gave an opportunity to hear the respondents before cancelling their mutation.

 One of other charges against Khemka is that he went to the media and spoke against the government and its policies.

On October 12, 2012, Khemka had ordered deputy commissioners of four districts to probe if Vadra had evaded stamp duty in any deals that may have taken place after 2005. The charge sheet states that there were nearly 3,000 land registrations undertaken in these areas and Khemka singled out just one person or a company while directing the deputy commissioners.

The officer has been charged for violating sections 3, 5, 6 and 7 of the All India Service Rules. The charges include administrative misconduct for overstepping jurisdiction in passing orders to cancel the mutation of 3.5 acres of land in Gurgaon's Shikohpur village.

Vadra's Sky Light Hospitality had entered into the sale agreement with DLF for the sale of the land. A probe committee set by the state government had reportedly given a clean chit to Robert Vadra and DLF.

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