Gfiles February 2014

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Haryana's De facto Chief Ministers?

Haryana's De facto Chief Ministers?

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  • 1. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST SUBMITTED TO THE HON’BLE SUPREME COURT BY GFILES REGARDING THE GREAT LAND ROBBERY IN HARYANA. HOW HOODA ALONG WITH HIS CRONIES PLUNDERED HARYANA IN HIS 9 YEARS OF RULE. p10 February 10, 2014 ` VOL. 7, ISSUE 11 JAPAN ABEPLOMACY JEFF KINGSTON p76 gfilesindia.com Haryana’s Venod Sharma Kunal Bhadoo Congress MLA, Ambala Hooda’s son-in-law KP Singh Owner, BPTP Owner, DLF Chief Ministers? Sameer Gehlaut Arvind Walia Anil Bhalla Owner, Indiabulls Owner, Ramprastha Owner, Vatika Builders M G RA DE CE VA FO SA R HA PM Y A p6 M 8 Kabul Chawla De facto
  • 2. Regn.No.DL(C)-14/1161/2013-15 Licence No. U(C)-03/2013-15, Licence to post without prepayment Posted on 7th & 8th of every month at SPM SRT Nagar, Post Office, New Delhi 110055 R.N.I. No: DELENG/2007/19719. Rs`200, vol. 7, issue 11 | Date of Publication: 10/2/2014 gfiles Regd. Address: 118, 2nd Floor, DDA Site 1, New Rajinder Nagar, New Delhi – 110 060
  • 3. From the Editor I vol. 7, ISSUE 11 | FEBRUARY 2014 Anil Tyagi | editor TR Ramachandran | executive editor Niranjan Desai | roving editor GS Sood | consulting business editor Rakesh Bhardwaj | editorial consultant Arvind Tiwari | director, business development Naresh Minocha | associate editor Neeraj Mahajan | associate editor Alok Jain | coordinator (maharashtra) Ajit Ujjainkar | bureau chief (mumbai) Harishchandra Bhat | associate editor (bengaluru) Venugopalan | bureau chief (bengaluru) Kanika Srivastava | editorial coordinator Mayank Awasthi | reporter Pawan Kumar | production coordinator Sumer Singh | assistant manager, logistics Nipun Jain | finance Gautam Das | legal consultant Crossmedia Solutions | edit & design Madan Lal | Webmaster advertising & marketing adv@gfilesindia.com U K SHARMA— +919717588883 e-mail: uksharma@gfilesindia.in RAKESH ARORA— +919810648809 SAKSHAY PAHUJA— +918527006688 e-mail: adv@gfilesindia.com mumbai: 48/C-1, Areshwar, Mhada, S.V.P. Nagar, Andheri(W), Mumbai 400 053 bengaluru: 2210, 10b main road, 3 block, jayanagar, bengaluru 560 011 CONTACT — +91 9845730298 e-mail: venu@gfilesindia.in +All information in gfiles is obtained from sources that the management considers reliable, and is disseminated to readers without any responsibility on our part. Any opinions or views on any contemporary or past topics, issues or developments expressed by third parties, whether in abstract or in interviews, are not necessarily shared by us. Copyright exclusively with Sarvashrestha Media Pvt. Ltd. All rights reserved throughout the world. Reproduction of any material of this magazine in whole, or in part(s), in any manner, without prior permission, is totally prohibited. The publisher accepts no responsibility for any material lost or damaged in transit. The publisher reserves the right to refuse, withdraw or otherwise deal with any advertisement without explanation. All advertisements must comply with the Indian Advertisements Code. Published and printed by Anil Tyagi on behalf of Sarvashrestha Media Pvt. Ltd at Kala Jyothi Process Pvt Ltd. E-125, Site-B, Surajpur Ind. Area, Gautam Budh Nagar, Greater Noida-201306 U.P. (INDIA). All disputes are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of competent courts in New Delhi only T was March 2013, when Chhattar Singh, Principal Secretary (PS) to the Chief Minister of Haryana was about to retire and the new incumbent had to be selected. There were many officers in line. At the time, I met one of the senior-most officers, who too desired the prestigious post. We discussed the possibilities about who would be selected by Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the Chief Minister of Haryana. In the discussion, he said that the selection required the tacit consent of Venod Sharma, the controversial Congress MLA and liquor baron. I was taken aback. He further said that not only Venod Sharma, but the PS to CM also needed the backing of the influential builder lobby of Haryana. As a journalist, this was the first clue to the Cover Story that we carry in this issue. I sensed a big scam. Following this conversation, I toured the State many times and met a lot of leaders, officers and common people. The story built up slowly. What our Associate Editor Neeraj Mahajan unravelled was shocking—a complete surrender of the State administrative machinery before the almighty builder mafia. I have been covering Haryana for the last 31 years and in my experience, no Chief Minister had ever been influenced by an extraconstitutional authority in the selection of a PS in the Chief Minister’s Secretariat. Not only the PS, but also the District Collectors (DC) and Superintendent of Police (SP) have always been the personal choice of the Chief Minister. Venod Sharma; Kunal Bhadoo, Hooda’s son-in-law; Kabul Chawla, businessman and close associate of Hooda; Anil Bhalla, CMD Vatika Group; Arvind Walia, owner of Ramprastha Developers Pvt Ltd; KP Singh, DLF Chairman; and, Sameer Gehlaut of Indiabulls were the names that figured prominently in the search for the story. Senior officers confided that nothing moved without their go-ahead. According to the whispers, they are the de facto chief ministers of Haryana. The State has approximately 200 builders, who are constructing the so-called modern Haryana. It is astonishing that these 200 builders have around 20,000 companies registered with the Registrar of Companies. How the web of these companies is allegedly converting huge amounts of black money into white and vice versa, is a matter that needs further investigation. In the early 1990s, the Delhi Lease and Finance Company (DLF) started developing some patches of land in Gurgaon, but it was on a very small scale. Getting licences and acquiring land was a tough task as the land-owning community was not willing to surrender the land for private colonisation. So, DLF first used to buy the land from farmers and then allegedly KP Singh personally used to meet the Chief Minister for change of land use (CLU). All the Lals (Bansi, Bhajan and Devi) of Haryana were clued into the sentiments of the masses. But, a new era of State planning surfaced with Bhupinder Singh Hooda coming to power. It is for the architectural institutes, administrators and town planners to study how a city can be planned without water, electricity, roads or other public amenities. The clearance of 100 per cent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in real estate by the Manmohan Singh government opened up the Pandora’s Box in Haryana. Today, the real estate sector in Haryana presents an ugly state of affairs—unorganised and unprotected labour working on haphazard and hurriedly constructed castles. Hooda’s vision of development in Haryana includes almost everyone who can enrich him, his friends and families, ignoring the people of the State. gfiles is taking the cause before the Hon’ble Supreme Court as a public interest initiative, to decide what a citizen of a State should do when the State administrative machinery becomes subservient to extra-constitutional authorities. ANIL TYAGI Download the gfiles app www.indianbuzz.com editor@gfilesindia.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 3
  • 4. CONTENTS 6 Bric-a-Brac LETTERS editor@gfilesindia.com 36 JIG I CA NES NSI T H, GH OF F T AL ATT L ES p 10 Petition in Public Interest THE GREAT LAND ROBBERY T posts & hosts MG DEVASAHAYAM HOODA SELLING HARYANA TO BUILDERS p26 January 5, 2014 ` VOL. 7, ISSUE 10 OM NARAIN VAID STARGAZER FIRST STIRRINGS p42 gfilesindia.com Fading Halo 62 Politics 68 Governance 72 76 Global Scan 81 Book Review 82 My Corner 84 Silly Point 87 Stock Doctor 88 Exhibition 96 Perspective 97 By the Way 4 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 It is more or less clear from the current scenario and the results of the elections of five states that the ruling party’s rule would probably come to an end. Although speeches and political rallies by Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi is not creating any place in the hearts and minds of the common people. Subramanium (‘Diminishing returns from dynasty’, gfiles, January 2014) has done an excellent analysis of what all is currently going on inside and outside the Congress. It shows that, by just belonging to the first family, Rahul cannot impact the public without proving himself practically. A K Saxena on blog K Subramaniam has rightly said Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi is no game changer. I just want to add one or two things. Rahul in his first TV interview was looking confused and directionless. After watching the interview it was saddening but he doesn’t bear any quality of a leader who can take a stand. I think the Congress think-tank has realised that Rahul baba can’t be a match winner for the Congress and that’s why after so many strong predictions, he has not been nominated as the prime ministerial can- didate. I think the recent assembly elections should be a lesson for Congressmen and they better pull up their socks before the general elections. R Sharma via email This is not the first time when an Indian has been treated in a highhanded manner by the US. I must say that the incidences covered by the writer Niranjan Desai (‘Give what you get’, gfiles, January 2014) give us complete overview of the image of India in the eyes of the US. This is a matter of self respect and self-esteem on both the national and international stage, that how Indians are being treated by other countries. By compiling previous such incidences, not only between India and US, but also with Brazil, Nigeria, UK, the writer has made an extraordinary effort to highlight such incidences and urge the higher authorities to take stringent steps. Madan Lal on blog I am not at all satisfied with the way Kejriwal is working. Kejriwal has confessed that he intends to bring anarchy in India. Besides showing a way to others and being set as an example, he is destroying the pattern of governance! What is his mission? Does he want to destabilise India? If yes, who sponsors him financially? Being a bureaucrat, he is expected to be extremely talented, but his decisions are worrying Delhiites! John on blog It is absolutely true that the first information report by the citizenry does not get its desired way. The writer has well explained the word ‘burking’ in his own way with the practical experiences of his life which also gives a clear message to the Indian police to stop burking and let the common man walk on the right track to get justice. Shruti Goel via email www.gfilesindia.com
  • 5. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 5
  • 6. Bric-a-brac posts & hosts Wooing the media freebies, high posts and even marriage I F one desires to enter politics or get married, the easiest way apparently is to join a newspaper or TV organisation. It is well known that media management has become a tough job for political parties and its leaders. The media fraternity also knows that every party needs them desperately to reach to the masses. Top political parties are wooing journalists by distributing all kind of freebies. Some Chief Ministers are distributing free houses, cars and highend telephones. The new rage is to appoint journalist at constitutional posts. Mulayam Singh Yadav has appointed Amethi bulletin sanjay singh cynosure of all T HE parliamentary constituency of Amethi has been continuously in the news for the last 3O years as Sanjay Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi have been contesting from this seat for the Congress. This seat has some sort of magic; whosoever plans to contest from this seat becomes popular across the country overnight. Aam Aadmi Party candidate Kumar Vishwas’ candidature has created a furore among Congress Party officials. It was more so because Sanjay Singh, a strong Thakur leader of UP and MP from Sultanpur, planned to desert the Congress Party at a time when the party is fighting its battle for survival. For so many years, Sanjay Singh has 6 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 four journalists as information commissioners. One of them is his son Prateek Yadav’s father-in-law, Arvind Singh Bisht, a retired journalist from The Times of India. The others are Raj Keshar of Dainik Jagran, Delhi; Sudesh Kumar of Dainik Jagran, Lucknow; and Vijay Sharma of Charchit Rajneeti, Lucknow. Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has also appointed three journalists as information commissioners in the state. Sukhbir Singh Badal has similarly obliged. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has nominated Harivansh, a veteran journalist, for Rajya Sabha. One should not be surprised that the Aam Aadmi Party’s nickname in Delhi is “Media Party”. Except for Arvind Kejriwal, most of the leaders, be it Manish Sisodia, Yogendra Yadav, or Ashutosh, are in one way or the other connected to the media. It is also learnt that one of the channel heads has been offered the South Mumbai seat by a national party. It is interesting to observe many politicians have married TV journalists in the last five years. A young and prominent Chief Minister of North India is reportedly having an affair with a renowned TV anchor. But, things got a bit sour when an MP from Bihar proposed to an agency reporter; the young lady just smiled and moved away to do her professional duty. g been completely neglected by the party. He used to wonder what happened to the party, where the facilitators of major industrial houses have become ministers and political leaders are being ignored. The moment the Congress realised that winning Amethi will be difficult without the active support of Thakur of Amethi, everybody in the party started talking to him. Singh is well-connected in every political party, BJP’s top brass too, has been in touch with him. The only way to stop Sanjay from joining the BJP, would be with an assurance of a settled political career. Finally, the Thakur got a Rajya Sabha nomination from Assam which has assured him political stability for six years. It is yet to be seen if Sanjay will be given some important job in UP or not. g www.gfilesindia.com
  • 7. INSIDE EYE ILLUSTRATIONS: ARUNA Ticket to ride getting a parliament car pass M INISTERS and Members of Parliament are perpetually in a state of being temporary. Their entrance to the Parliament is restricted by passes issued for parking their vehicles. The 15th Lok Sabha had 15 sessions in five years. The MPs never faced any problem in entering the house. So, the Parliament Security was in a fix whether to issue the car passes for the current year to the present MPs or not. Technically, the term of the Parliament is over after the second session. In such a scenario, if the Parliament Security issues the passes for 2014 to the current MPs and they do not win seats in the forthcoming elections, how can the security stop their entry. Parliament Security were finally able to get a solution as the new Prime Minister has to be elected on or before May 21, 2014 and the results of the 16th Lok Sabha will be finalised by May 15, 2014. After calculating the dates, Parliament Security officials have issued car www.indianbuzz.com passes to the sitting MPs which are valid till May 15, 2014. The happiest lot are the ex-MPs, who have got their yearly pass on time. There are ex-MPs who have been voted out for the last 30 years but are still entitled to an entry whereas the senior officials who are working in the Parliament for last 30 years are not allowed with their personal vehicles; they have to park in Parliament Annexe. g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 7
  • 8. Bric-a-brac posts & hosts A Prime Ministerial debate trade, media to ask the questions A businessman seldom leaves an opportunity to approach the political party in power. The 16th Lok Sabha Elections are on and nobody knows who will be the next Prime Minister of India. It is a rare occurrence that no one knows who to bank on. Trade associations are active to grab any opportunity to introduce Prime Ministerial candidates to their influential top business personalities. Prime Ministerial candidates are also happy to meet them before the elections for obvious reasons. One of the top prominent trade associations has finalised ten candidates for a round table discussion before the elections. It is going to be an interesting debate with not only by business personalities but media as well. The prominent prime ministerial candidates are Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi, Navin Patnaik, Nitish Kumar, Jayalalitha, Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Mayawati and Shivraj Singh Chauhan, who have been invited for the discussion. When gfiles asked one of the chief members of the trade association, what was planned in case none of the candidates became the PM, he did not have an answer. g 8 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 9. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 9
  • 10. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate THE GREAT Haryana is not a state, it is real estate by ANIL TYAGI “We must speak up irrespective of whether it will have its desired effects or not, because by speaking up we may not guarantee raising the consciousness of the people who listen but by not speaking up we will definitely let the people to remain deaf and dumb”. When in 2004, the citizens of Haryana elected Bhupinder Singh Hooda first time as their Chief Minister, they must have thought 10 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 that the monopoly of Lals (Devi Lal, Bhajan Lal and Bansi Lal) will be over. They had breathed a sigh of relief and posed faith in the new leadership of Hooda. Alas! Hooda, alias Bhupi, has belied their hopes and aspirations. Hooda, in his nine years of rule, has emerged as a coloniser, builder and a shrewd businessman who worked only to serve the interest of the elitist class of the country rather than to serve the citizens of Haryana. It is an astonishing scenario where a Chief Minister, who has been elected as a protector and guarantor of a sovereign State in the federal structure of India, allegedly became the plunderer of the State resources. The land, which is the prime source of existence of the farmer in the State, is in the hands of such a Chief Minister, who joined hands with greedy plunderers of the State who have nothing to do with the development of the Haryana and Haryanvis; their main aim is to make a quick buck in the shortest possible time. Haryana’s state of affairs is a www.gfilesindia.com
  • 11. LAND ROBBERY colonisers. Hooda’s rule is a sordid saga where, in all 21 districts of the State the rules have been amended, master plans have been malafidely drafted and environmental and ecological laws thrown into the dustbin at the behest of the builders’ mafia, with the connivance of the political and administrative machinery. Land is the one resource which cannot be stretched. The population of India is growing every day. India has to debate how an elected Chief Minister, legislators and the State administrative machinery should utilise the State’s resources only for the welfare of the State and nobody else. India has to debate how a Chief Minister can dare to connive with the PHOTOS: RAJEEV TYAGI bizarre example of administrative, political and economic mismanagement, where the whole administrative machinery connived and surrendered to serve the builder mafia rather than to serve the poor and the poorest of the State. Like plunderers of yore, Genghis Khan and Mahmud of Ghazni, Hooda, the Chief Minister elected for five years planned and designed the Master Plan for the next 50 years, that too without consulting the stakeholders within the State. Haryana is a peculiar State where farmers, land owners, communities and city residents have been coerced to surrender the precious land—which they owned for generations— under the guise of the Land Acquisition Act to greedy www.indianbuzz.com builder mafia to implement the Master Plan and forcibly take away farmers’ land without consultation with the stakeholders in that particular district. Hooda never bothered to consult the panchayats, block pramukhs, zila parishads, local MLAs and municipalities in nine years as the Chief Minister. He seems to have defied all the parameters that define a democratic State. Our Associate Editor, Neeraj Mahajan, after three months of investigation, has unearthed the allegedly unholy nexus of Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, his coterie, and the builder mafia in a detailed public interest initiative, submitted to the Hon’ble Supreme Court. It explains how a Chief Minister can become a despotic ruler rather than messiah. gfiles, in its endeavour, has spared 50 pages of the magazine, which no publication dares to do for one story. In the forthcoming issues, we will expose how individual builders and some of the billionaire MLAs of Haryana are making castles without proper mechanism and infrastructure, just to befool the poor man, who is dreaming about having a roof over his head one day with his hard-earned money. g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 11
  • 12. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate A Petition In The Public Interest W.P No……..of 2014 THE HON’BLE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA, NEW DELHI (Extraordinary Writ Jurisdiction) In the matter of: gfiles : A magazine on governance (Regd.No.DL Eng/2007/19719) 118, IInd Floor, DDA Site-I, New Rajinder Nagar, New Delhi – 110060 VERSUS 1. Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Chief Minister of Haryana 2. 3. 4. 12 Secretary, Ministry of Finance Department of Revenue Room No. 46, North Block New Delhi - 110 001 Ministry of Environment & Forests Government of India Paryavaran Bhavan CGO Complex, Lodhi Road New Delhi-110003 Ministry of Urban Development Government of India Through: National Capital Region Planning Board, Core-IV B, First Floor India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road New Delhi-110003 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 …. Petitioner 5. Department of Town & Country Planning & Urban Estate Government of Haryana 4th Floor, Haryana Civil secretariat Chandigarh 6. Department of Labour Government of Haryana, 30 Bays Building, Sector 17, Chandigarh - 160 017 7. Ministry of Forests & Environment Government of Haryana Room No. 34, 8th Floor Haryana Civil Secretariat Chandigarh ……..Respondents www.gfilesindia.com
  • 13. (Any other Ministry, Departments, organisations and individuals as will be deemed just and appropriate to be made as parties with the permission of this Hon’ble Court) MOST RESPECTFULLY SHOWETH: Court by way of the present writ petition for public interest by invoking the extraordinary writ jurisdiction of this Hon’ble Court with a prayer, as mentioned in the prayer clause, to decide once and for all whether people sitting in the government, or in other words, State can arbitrarily decide the use of land resources, especially in view of the fact that mass scale favouritism and misuse of land to benefit a handful of powerful coterie and that too in flagrant violation of all existing environmental and other laws, rules and regulations made therein to protect the control of land uses and to avoid any haphazard development of land and ecological disturbances and for matters connected therewith. respect seem to have no effect on the present day Haryana Government. In one of the much discussed judgements, the Hon’ble Justice GS Singhvi held that: The framers of the Constitution and the representative of the people who were responsible for introducing Part IV-A enacted the above provisions with a fond hope that every citizen will honestly play his role in building of a homogeneous society in which every Indian will be able to live with dignity without having to bother about the basics, like food, clothing, shelter, education, www.indianbuzz.com Haryana Government’s Labour Department turns a blind eye to lack of safety norms for workers (above); new housing colonies are being built but without water supply (left) medical aid, and the nation will constantly march forward and will take its place of pride in the comity of nations. However, what has happened during the last few decades is sufficient to shatter those hopes. The gap between ‘haves’ and ‘haves-not’ of the society, which existed even in pre-Independent India, has widened to such an extent that bridging it appears to be an impossibility. A new creed of people (haves) has come into existence. Those belonging to this category have developed a new value system which is totally incompatible with the values and ideals cherished by the Indian society for centuries together. They have grabbed power, political and apolitical, and have successfully used the public institutions to subserve their ends. The system of quotas, licences, permits, etc., has been used and misused by them for increasing their material wealth. Their actions have created an atmosphere of diffidence in all walks of life. The common man has started feeling that this new creed of people, who believe in grabbing whatever comes its way, is unstoppable and the law will also become its servant because quite a few people belonging to this class are creators and administrators of law. However, it appears that every thing is not lost. The third organ of the State, whose primary duty has been to interpret the Constitution and the provisions of law and to adjudicate PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 13
  • 14. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate the disputes between the individual (s) and the State and between individuals inter se, or groups of individual, has been forced by the people and the circumstances to take steps to uphold the majesty of law and the authority of the Constitution. Secretary, JDA vs Daulat Mal Jain, JT 1996(8) SC 387, the Apex Court had the occasion to examine allotment of lands to the respondents by the Minister and the committee headed by the Minister. Some of the observations made in that decision are quite relevant in the context of the present case and are therefore, quoted below: “... The Minister holds public office though he gets constitutional status and performs functions under constitution, law executive policy. The acts done and duties performed are public acts or duties as holding of the public office. Therefore, he owes certain accountability for the acts done or duties performed. In a democratic society governed by rule of law, power is conferred on the holder of the public office or the concerned authority by the Constitution by Haphazard construction has created havoc all around 14 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 virtue of appointment. The holder of the office, therefore, gets opportunity to abuse or misuse of the office. The politician who holds public office must perform public duties with the sense of purpose, and a sense of direction, under rules or sense of priorities. The purpose must be genuine in a free democratic society governed by the rule of law to further socioeconomic democracy. The executive Government should frame its policies to maintain the social order, stability, progress and morality. All actions of the Government are performed through/by individual persons in collective or joint or individual capacity. Therefore, they should morally be responsible for their actions.... The Minister is responsible not only for his actions but also for the job of the bureaucrats who work or have worked under him. He owes the responsibility to the electors for all his actions taken in the name of the Governor in relation to the Department of which he is the Head. If the Minister, in fact, is responsible for all the detailed working of his Department, then clearly ministerial responsibility must cover a wider spectrum than mere moral responsibility; for no minister can possibly get acquainted with; all the detailed www.gfilesindia.com
  • 15. decisions involved in the working of his Department.... The so-called public policy cannot be a camouflage for abuse of the power and trust entrusted with a public authority or public servant for the performance of public duties. Misuse implies doing of something improper. The essence of impropriety is replacement of a public motive for a private one. When satisfaction sought in the performance of duties is for mutual personal gain, the misuse is usually termed as corruption. The holder of a public office is said to have misused his position when in pursuit of a private satisfaction, as distinguished from public interest, he has done something which he ought not to have done. The most elementary qualification demanded of a Minister is honesty and incorruptibility. He should not only possess these qualifications but should also appear to possess the same.” well known, has been rapidly converted into jungle of concrete, taking a heavy toll on existing flora and fauna of the State and damaging its reputation of being the food bowl of the country. his tenure, kept all the important departments relating to land and urban development under his control with the sole motive of taking unilateral decisions regarding sale and allotment of land to a select www.indianbuzz.com Most favoured, BPTP’s gateway to billions few favourite individuals and groups, turning them billionaires overnight at the cost of poor Haryanvis. changed, altered or modified with the motive of favouring a select group of builders close to the Chief Minister and its coterie, benefiting both with complete disregard to systemic planning and the basic laws of equity. So much so that three Master Plans were created in haste, including Master Plan 2031, assuming that the same government will continue for decades to come. politicians and others to seek political and other favours i.e. Quid pro quo. changed midway to safeguard commercial interest of some favoured builders with complete disregard to the cost and loss of revenue to the State exchequer. Government are allegedly influenced by a select coterie, comprising of influential politicians, builders and business mafia, including Venod Sharma, Kunal Badoo, Arvind Walia, Anil Sharma, Kabul Chawla and Sameer Gehlaut. PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 15
  • 16. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Men in shadows: Those who pull the political strings by NEERAJ MAHARAJ I T would be difficult to imagine even a legend like Sachin Tendulkar single-handedly batting, bowling and keeping the field all by himself. Likewise, try as much as she might, singing sensation Lata Mangeshkar too would find it difficult to write the lyrics, compose, direct the music, coordinate, sing and play all the 16 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 musical instruments all by herself. It is next to impossible to imagine that Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda is managing the whole show all by himself. As far as taking important decisions and deciding the policy on real estate is concerned, Hooda allegedly depends on his son-in-law Kunal Bhadoo, DLF strongman KP Singh, former Union minister Venod Sharma, entrepre- neur Jawahar Goel (Dish TV, Essel Group of Companies), Kabul Chawla (promoter of BPTP), Arvind Walia (Director, Ramprastha Group), Sushil Ansal (Promoter of Ansal Group), Sameer Gehlaut (Indiabulls) as well as Anil and Gautam Bhalla of Vatika Ltd. Call it a high-power committee, think-tank or a more informal kitchen cabinet, they are the ones who allegedly decide most actions concerning the www.gfilesindia.com
  • 17. MNC offices on Delhi-Jaipur highway are edifices to lure innocent customers GURGAON-MANESAR URBAN COMPLEX Land use Residential Master plan 2021 Area in hectares 14,930 Master plan 2025 Area in hectares 15,148 Master plan 2031 Area in hectares 16,010 Commercial 1,404 1,429 1,616 Industrial 5,441 5,431 4,613 Transport and communication Public utilities 4,231 4,289 4,420 564 609 626 Institutional Public and semi-public use  Open spaces 1,630 1,775 2,035 2,675 2,688 2,775 Special zone 106 106 114 Defence land 633 633 633 31,614 32,108 32,842 Total land Special Economic Zone 4,570 4,570 Existing town 406 406 406 Village abadis 428 428 478 37,069 37,512 33,726 Grand total Source: Town and Country Planning, Haryana www.indianbuzz.com real estate sector in the State. In other words, one may say that these are the people who are allegedly helping, rather driving, Hooda to ruin Haryana. A PART from them, IAS officers like the on-deputation 1996 batch Karnataka cadre IAS officer Rajender Kumar Kataria, the son-in-law of Haryana Congress president Phool Chand Mullana, former Haryana additional advocate general and advocate Sunil Parti, hotelier Kewal Dhingra and foot soldiers like Hooda’s officer on special duty, M S Chopra, fill in the blanks. A former Army Officer, Kushal Pal Singh, the son-in-law of DLF Group founder, is allegedly a master in the art of give and take and political arm-twisting for strategic business PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 17
  • 18. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate T The BPTP and DLF saga HE biggest beneficiary of the Hooda rule is none other than Business Park Town Planners Limited, also known as BPTP, promoted by Kabul Chawla, Punam (mother of Kabul Chawla) and Anjali Chawla (wife of Kabul Chawla). Incorporated under the Companies Act on August 11, 2003, BPTP has a number of companies, like Countrywide Promoters Pvt Ltd, Countrywide Home and Farms Pvt Ltd, Glitz Builders & Promoters Pvt Ltd, Foliage Construction Pvt Ltd, Five Star Promoters Pvt Ltd, Vital Construction Pvt Ltd, Native Buildcon Pvt Ltd, Green Valley Towers Pvt Ltd, Anupam Towers Pvt Ltd, Sunglow Overseas Pvt Ltd, Druzba Overseas Pvt Ltd, Business Park Promoters Pvt Ltd, Fragrance Construction Pvt Ltd, KA Promoters & Developers Pvt Ltd, Westland Developers Pvt Ltd, Poonam Promoters & Developers Pvt Ltd and Vasundra Promoters Pvt Ltd. BPTP was an unknown and insignificant player till 2005. After Hooda became the Chief Minister, its fortunes changed, almost overnight in 2005, and the company started aggressively staking claim over prime land in and around Faridabad. In just three years, it had acquired licenses to develop 283.88 acres land at unheard of rock bottom prices—`210 per sq ft—in Faridabad. The company starting selling the first of its plots in 2006 and by 2009 it had sold approximately 5,657 residential plots, 10,685 apartments, 463 commercial plots and other commercial space. In January 2009, when the Hooda Government permitted registration of independent floors on residential plots, BPTP took full advantage and re-aligned its business from plotted housing to independent floors. This proved to be advantage. He knows how to subtly manage his strengths and weaknesses and gain business mileage. This is the least you can expect from a man who managed to leverage a chance meeting with Rajiv Gandhi to gain virtual monopoly in Gurgaon. At least, you can say, he was shrewd and bold enough to move in an unchartered direction. Not many would have dared to do what he did… even today he is mentally just as sharp in spotting an opportunity and going all out to grab it as if there is going to be no tomorrow. 18 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 W a bestselling offer as almost all the 4,997 three bedroom units in its newly launched ‘Park Elite Floors’ were sold out in five months—between May and September 2009. Even the 2nd phase of Park Elite Floors was sold by September 30, 2009, and BPTP was able to mop up nearly `2.41 billion from the market. Today, with licenses for close to 1,606 acre land in Two to tango: The BPTP couple ITHIN the group, apart from son-in-law Kunal Bhadoo, Hooda depends most on the controversial Congress leader from Chandigarh, Venod Sharma, known for his troubleshooting and negotiating skills. A former Union and State minister, Sharma had to quit the Power Ministry after embarrassing public disclosures about him trying to bribe three witnesses in the Jessica Lal case, in which his son Manu Sharma was the key accused. Even though Venod Sharma, who is also related to Haryana assembly speaker Kuldeep Sharma (his daughter Aishwarya is married to Venod Sharma’s youngest son Kartikeya), seemingly remained out of the power circuit, he is one of those who challenge their luck to the limit. That is why despite being out of power, he enjoys such clout that in informal conversations he is reportedly referred to as “Mr 10 Crore” in real estate circles. The reason is fairly obvious—no big land deal is possible in the State without his direct or indirect involvement. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 19. Faridabad and Gurgaon, Countrywide Promoters, or BPTP, is way ahead of even Ansal Properties & Infrastructure (1,360 acres), or DLF (939 acres). It is so powerful that it virtually runs a parallel government, at least as far as Faridabad and Gurgaon are concerned. No government official reportedly dares to come in its way. Some say Hooda himself is a benami owner in the company, which is currently KP Singh developing 24 group housing, IT and residential projects in Faridabad and Gurgaon. The company’s biggest strength is that the average cost of its land reserve is as low as `188 per sq ft. This allows it to sell properties at relatively attractive prices and, in fact, is the reason behind its phenomenal success in a relatively short time-span. Such is BPTP’s clout that despite a complaint by the owner of a 14.793 acres land in Sector 106 in Gurgaon to the Haryana TCP not to issue the license till the agreed sale price was paid, the TCP department not only awarded but also renewed the licenses despite the fact that BPTP still does not have possession of the land, or has begun any construction activity. One of the first developers to focus on Faridabad, Countrywide Promoters has the ability to identify suitable land, acquire and consolidate it. This role is played by an in-house research team of 30 personnel that gathers market data, assesses the potential of a location, and evaluates its demographic profile as well as government schemes and incentives, as applicable. One of the richest politicians in the state, Sharma’s `500-crore empire consists of Piccadily Group of Industries, 4-star Piccadily Hotel in Sector 22, Blue Ice bar in Sector 17, chain of hotels, restaurants, cinema theatre, sugar mills, distilleries like Piccadily Sugar Industries, Piccadily Agro Industries, Shakti Fibres, Piccadily Holiday Resorts and Lyons Restaurant, besides a number of commercial and residential properties in Chandigarh. He has big stakes in the liquor trade www.indianbuzz.com DLF holds the largest land bank of 10,255 acres (42 sq km), including 3,000 acres (12 sq km) that has been developed and 1,000 acres under development in Gurgaon. DLF Limited is the largest commercial real estate developer in India by revenue, profit, and market share. DLF is so powerful that no government in Haryana can chose to ignore it. Whatever it wants is reportedly given. gfiles investigations reveal that all almost all proposals for grant of licenses are directly approved by the Chief Minister himself, often overruling senior officials to benefit a particular builder. Significantly, within two years of his chief ministership, on December 19, 2006, Hooda changed the policy for grant of license and change of land use with retrospective effect—from June 7, 2005. By specifically stating that “the licenses shall be granted/refused by the DTCP with prior internal concurrence of the State Government at the Minister’s Level”, this ensured that Hooda—who was the housing minister as well as Chairman TCP and HUDA— was the ultimate authority to sanction or deny a license. Even if the Director, Town Planning, wanted to grant or deny a license, he needed to get the Chief Minister’s concurrence. This, in effect, sealed the fate of all cooperatives housing, giving a free hand to group housing societies and builders. This policy also relaxed the norms for change of land use and discontinued grant of licenses for cooperative housing societies, even in low potential zones. in Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. It is alleged that Hooda is a shareholder in Sharma’s hotels, sugar and construction business. S ON of liquor baron and onetime President of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, Kidarnath Sharma, Venod Sharma has a good network in the Brahmin, Aggarwal, Rajput and Punjabi communities in Haryana. Hooda has many reasons to rely on his school-time friend. As the head of the 40-mem- ber election campaign committee, Sharma’s backroom organising skills helped Hooda muster the support of 53 members in the 90-member house when the Congress had just 40 members in the last elections. Sharma always stood by him—even when Hooda was an aspiring politician from Rohtak. On his part, Hooda too lobbied to get Sharma the Ambala Assembly ticket when he was a political untouchable after the Jessica Lal murder case. PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 19
  • 20. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Venod Sharma Kabul Chawla Kunal Bhadoo THE ‘H’ COMPANY Sameer Gehlaut KP Singh S HARMA, who began his political career as general secretary of Chandigarh Congress Committee, lost no time in becoming Sanjay Gandhi’s blue-eyed boy, general secretary of All India Youth Congress under Ghulam Nabi Azad’s leadership, MLA, MP and Union minister—all within one decade. There was a time when even as a first-time MLA, he was treated as virtual No. 2 and the most resourceful State cabinet minis- Arvind Walia Anil Bhalla ter—more powerful than even Deputy Chief Minister Chander Mohan, a three-time MLA. Sharma’s youngest son Kartikeya heads Information TV Pvt Ltd, which controls News X television channel, Good Morning India Media Pvt Ltd and Aaj Samaj group of newspapers. It is alleged that any builder who wants any new license, or any concession, from Hooda has to necessarily go through Sharma. Sharma’s own interests in real estate are taken care of through a string of companies like Onkareshwar Properties Private Limited, Mark Buildtech Properties Private Limited, Shivam Infotech Private Limited and Pegasus Developers Shikhopur Pvt Ltd. Kartikeya is on the Board of Director’s and reportedly owns 99 per cent shares in Mark Buildtech, which has business dealings with Onkareshwar Properties. The two, incidentally, GREAT HARYANA LAND USE CONVERSION CIRCUS Area Up to 30 Sq Metre Area Over 30 Sq Metre Old Rate New Rate Old Rate New Rate  Gurgaon `14,000 `3,000 `16,000 `3,500  Faridabad `7,200 `1,500 `9,200 `2,000  Sonepat `6,000 `1,000 `7,500 `1,200  Panipat `6,000 `1,000 `7,500 `1,200  Panchkula `7,200 `1,500 `9,200 `2,000 20 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 21. are registered at the same address in Nehru Place. Sushil Gupta, one of the Directors of Onkareshwar Properties, is a close aide of Hooda; Harvinder Singh Chopra, a Director in Mark Buildtech, is also Finance Director of Piccadily Group; while Rajender Bansal, a friend of Sharma from Panchkula, is on the Board of Directors of both the companies. The other directors include Dhirender Dadwal and Tarun Bhanot, a relative of Sharma. Mark Buildtech allegedly has strong business linkages with Vatika Ltd promoted by Anil and Gautam Bhalla, who seemingly has prospered from the association. In fact, after the Haryana government granted three land licenses to Vatika group, the group’s assets skyrocketed unimaginably in three years. Top 33 Most Benefitted Builders of Hooda Regime S.No. Promoters/ Builders Land License Obtained in Acres I www.indianbuzz.com 1606 2 Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  1360 3 DLF New Gurgaon Home Developers 939 4 Intime Promoters (TDI) 867 5 Omaxe Housing & Developers 866 6 Unitech 725 7 Vatika Land Base   632 8 Parshavnath Developers 603 9 Emaar MGF Land  531 10 IREO KSS Properties 519 11 Sonika 399 12 Chintals India  396 13 AN Buildwell   315 14 Bestech India   297 15 Uddar Gagan 291 16 Reliance Haryana SEZ 251 Rangoli Projects   242 18 India Bulls Estates  222 19 Vipul Infrastructure Developers  216 20 Dwarkadhis Buildwell 209 21 Raheja Developers   195 22 Ramprastha Buildwell   189 23 Pioneer Urban Land & Infrastructure    177 24 Herman Fin Properties 154 25 Grandeur Real Estate 145 26 Uppal Housing  142 27 F it is not Sharma, another person who can come up with miracles and has direct access to the CM is Kunal Bhadoo, the prodigal son of Vijay Laxmi Bhadoo, a senior SADBJP leader in Punjab. He is married to Hooda’s daughter Anjali. A Masters in International Accounting and Finance from London School of Economics and qualified Chartered Accountant from ICAEW, UK, he worked for six years in London for PwC LLP before coming back to India in 2006 to start Kunskapsskolan Eduventures India, which runs three K-12 schools in Countrywide Promoters   17 It is alleged that any builder who wants any new license, or any concession, from Hooda has to necessarily go through Venod Sharma, Congress leader from Chandigarh 1 Jai Krishna Artec JV 123 28 Mapsco Buildwell 120 29 Parveen Gupta, Vipin Gupta 118 30 ERA Infrastructure 118 31 Martial Buildcon 117 32 Desert Moon Realtors Pvt. Ltd. 110 33 Orris Infrastructure 108 Jaipur, Karnal and Abohar. Kunal is also Director of Havelock Developers Pvt Ltd, Bhadoo Agritech at Abohar, which is into contract processing and packaging of citrus fruits and fresh vegetables, Navyug Group of Companies, Navyug Eduventures and Satellite Forging Pvt Ltd, a joint venture with the JBM Group. He is alleged to be an unofficial member of Hooda’s kitchen cabinet along with his mother-in-law, Asha Hooda; brother-in-law Deepinder PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 21
  • 22. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Hooda and Venod Sharma. They are virtually running a parallel government in Haryana which has a say in everything—from selection, transfer and postings of candidates to ‘interviews’ conducted by departmental committees to grant licenses to favourite builders. A S per market intelligence gathered from buyers, sellers and brokers, these days Badoo is allegedly on a buying spree in Sector 70 and 70A, just outside the Master Plan areas, along the Southern Peripheral road. According to informed sources, unwritten orders are that anyone else who tries to buy lands in this area should be The Dwarka-Gurgaon Expressway: Where it starts and ends, nobody knows! 22 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 The arbitrary and ad-hoc manner in which decisions are taken or altered in Hooda’s tenure can be judged from just two examples: the Dwarka Expressway and the Northern Express Road discouraged. In all probability, this area will be included in another revised or extended Master Plan just before the elections. The price shoots up at least 50 times when it gets included in the Master Plan. One of the features of the Master plan 2031, that has escaped the attention, is a restriction that only 20 per cent of the total area can be taken up by Group Housing Societies in a particular sector. This has opened up scope for discretionary licenses, or refusal, on the plea that the quota has been exceeded. Another feature of the Master Plan was to increase population density figures in specific zones from 250300 people per hectare to over 1,000 people per hectare. This has opened up floodgates for manipulation by the politician-builder network. The Haryana government is also likely to come up with a new scheme of oneacre farmhouses or country homes outside the Master Plan areas in Gurgaon, Sohna and other parts of Haryana. That will be another opportunity to make a fast buck for builders/developers and brokers. Already many people have started buying huge tracts of land for the purpose. Whenever they get struck, www.gfilesindia.com
  • 23. LEGACY OF 12 CMs & PRESIDENT’S RULE I N the last 23 years, Haryana has seen 12 CMs and one President’s Rule. Except for Chaudhary Devi Lal, Banarsi Das Gupta and Om Prakash Chautala Bansi Lal Bhagwat Dayal Sharma (in the initial stages), all others favoured one or Banarsi Das Gupta the other builder. The biggest example of political favouritism is the DLF, which is what it is today because of the patronage given by Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Bhajan Lal was the Chief Minister for close to five years from January 22, 1980. He was clearly in favour of the DLF, which managed to get 40 licenses for some 1,123 acres of land, largely in Gurgaon. Bhajan lal Bhupinder Singh Hooda Devi Lal Such was DLF’s monopoly that Ansal Properties & Infrastructure, its nearest rival, could just manage a toe-hold with 11 licenses for 442-acre land. Apart from these two, all the seven others who managed to get licenses from Bhajan Lal were insignificant players. As soon as Bansi Lal became the Chief Minister on July 5, 1985, the wind started blowing in the opposite direction and Ansal Properties & Infrastructure became the hot Hukum Singh Om Prakash Chautala favourite, bagging the maximum licenses, followed by DLF. Another significant contribution of Bansi Lal was the limited entry of Unitech and Utility builders. Chief Minister from July 17, 1990, to March 21, 1991, issued However, when Chaudhary Devi Lal became the Chief licenses for the National Media Centre (21 acres) and to Minister on July 17, 1987, not a single license was granted Durga Builder (127 acre). to any developer. This tradition was maintained even Om Prakash Chautala became the Chief Minister when his son Om Prakash Chautala remained the Chief again—from March 22, 1991, to April 6, 1991—and did not Minister from Dec 2, 1989, to May 22, 1990. issue any license during his term. After this, there was However, Dec 2, 1989—the last day of Devi Lal’s regime President's Rule in the State from April 6, 1991, to July 23, and first day of Om Prakash Chautala—would go down in 1991. Again, no licenses were issued in the period. the history of Haryana. On that single day, eight licenses However, in the following five years of Bhajan Lal’s were approved: DLF Universal (5) in Gurgaon Sectors 24, Chief Ministership—July 23, 1991, to May 9, 1996—60 25, 25A, 27, 28 and 43; Ansal (2) Gurgaon Sectors 1, 2, licenses were given. Those who benefitted included, 3, 17 and Unitech (1) Gurgaon Sectors 30, 40, 41. It may DLF (641 acres), Ansals (258 acres), Unitech (309 acres) be well worth investigating who sanctioned these licenses and others. on a single date and why. More so, when no license was In the next three years—May 11, 1996, to July 23, 1999— allotted two years before or two years after that date! Bansi Lal tried to match the record by sanctioning 39 proAfter Chautala, Banarsi Das Gupta was the Chief jects over 793 acres of land in Gurgaon. Though Ansal was Minister from May 22, 1990, to July 12, 1990, and Chautala the favourite, DLF and others too were granted licenses. again from July 12, 1990, to July 17, 1990. But, no license In his new term, from July 24, 1999, to March 4, 2005, Om was given in this period. Prakash Chautala was a changed person and sanctioned The jinx was broken when Hukam Singh, who was the 35 projects in Gurgaon over 463 acres of land. PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 23
  • 24. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate they approach someone like Badoo, who can’t say no to favours from builders. Here are a few examples: Hooda fiddles, Haryana burns E VER since he became Chief Minister of Haryana on March 5, 2005; Hooda has retained all the important administrative portfolios like Justice Administration, Law and Legislative, General Administration, Administrative Reforms, Home, Information, Public Relations and Personnel and Training with him. But his first love is urban development. This is clear from the manner in which he has retained all associated portfolios like Architecture, Panchayat Development, Town and Country Planning and Urban Estates and Urban Local Bodies. He is also the Chairman of the Town & Country S Planning (TCP), Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and Haryana State Industrial Development Corporation (HSIDC). This gives him complete control over all land deals in the State. In fact, he is referred to as ‘Haryana Overall Development Authority’. In 2005, when Hooda first became CM, he had 67 seats in the 90-member assembly. Every third MLA in the State was a Congressman. As a result, if a minister dared to step out of line, he was firmly told to behave. But today, with just 40 MLAs, to run the government at the mercy of independents is a big challenge. Hence, to keep the prominent politicians happy, Hooda tried to ‘gift’ HUDA residential plots to 79 present and former Haryana MPs and MLAs at Mansa Devi Complex, Panchkula at a throwaway price of `28 Lakh. It’s besides the point that these plots were worth at least `1.5 crore in the open market. The beneficiaries included his son Deepender Singh Hooda besides Kumari Selja, Venod Sharma, Kiran Chaudhary, Navin Jindal, Raghuveer Kadian, UNLAWFUL ACTS IN HOODA ERA OON after coming to power, one of the first PR exercise of Hooda Government was to drastically reduce the compounding, or conversion, fee for commercial properties. This populist move was aimed at gaining the goodwill of lakhs of building bylaws violators and those running business and commercial establishments from residential premises. Such persons now just had to pay `3,500, instead of `16,000 per square yard, for regularising their buildings along 30-metre roads in Gurgaon. Likewise, those in buildings along roads up to 30 metres had to pay `3,000, against `14,000 per square yard previously. Even people in small towns like Faridabad, Panchkula, Panipat, Sonepat, Karnal, Kurukshetra, Ambala, Yamunanagar, Bahadurgarh, Hissar, Rohtak, Palwal, 24 In Rohtak, Hooda’s home district, a clique of Sharad Farms and Holdings, Sonika Properties and Uddar Gagan Properties— all three subsidiaries of the consortium formed by Zee TV’s Essel Group, Action Group and Odeon Builders—has acquired almost 637 acres gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Hodal, Rewari and Sohna were given massive concessions. For instance, in Faridabad, the charges for buildings along more than 30-metre roads, were lowered from `9,200 to `2,000 per square yard. While the official plea was that conversion charges would improve the financial position of urban local bodies, no one can deny that this was actually a reward to the violators of law. A detailed analysis of Hooda government’s policies reveals how arbitrarily policies were drafted, modified and backdated to favour builders and individuals. For instance, a policy for release of land from acquisition (See Box) was modified within 26 days of being formulated in 2007. Once again, it was modified in 2011. Likewise, policy dated December 20, 2006, concerning group of persons, needed reconsid- eration within four months on April 24, 2007. Also, no explanation was offered why many of these polices needed to be backdated by over a year? A deeper probe may unearth many a skeletons in Hooda’s cupboard. One of the first significant changes Hooda brought about on April 24, 2007, was an amendment of an existing policy laid down by his government on December 20, 2006. Interestingly, this new policy, re-defined ‘Reputed Coloniser’ as someone “who has already obtained a license under the Haryana Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, 1975, by the Haryana Town and Country Planning Department (TCP)”. This policy allowed backdoor entry to those private developers, who were applying for the first time. They were given the option to sign a collaboration agreement with a group of www.gfilesindia.com
  • 25. persons licensed by the department to qualify to be called ‘Reputed Coloniser’. Curiously, a ticklish policy—dated March 27, 2008—decided to give onetime relaxation to private schools, whose applications were pending with the Education Department for want of recognition. The question is, how can the TCP Department provide legitimacy to private schools yet to be recognised by the Education Department? Obviously this was done as a favour. Significantly, the policy regarding grant of license to Cooperative Housing Societies, dated September 15, 2008, states that application of only those Cooperative House Building Societies, which have any collaboration with builders/developers having financial capacity and technical expertise to develop residential colonies, will be considered for a license. This gave an unfair advantage to the builders, with- www.indianbuzz.com out whose involvement Cooperative House Building Societies cannot even apply for a license. The manner in which HUDA did away with the upper time limit to complete the construction work, smacks of a sell-out to the builder lobby. Earlier, allottees could undertake construction on a residential or commercial plot within two years. Now, an extension of up to 13 years is possible after payment of a fee and the allottee can take 15 years (2+13 years) for construction from the date of possession. This new policy, that came into effect from April 12, 2013, is nothing but a ploy to renew the licenses of non-performing builders. The Haryana government has also not used over `10,000-crore EDC for creation of basic amenities collected from the end-consumers through the builders in the last five years. Dwarka-Gurgaon Expressway: The ugly reality of a ‘beautiful’ highway Randeep Surjewala, Phool Chand Mulana, Kiran Choudhry, Captain Ajay Singh Yadav, Chander Mohan, Hansraj Bhardwaj and Shamsher Singh Surjewala. They would all have been richer by a few crore rupees, but for a last minute hurdle created by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. A division bench, comprising Chief Justice Tirath Singh Thakur and Justice Mahesh Grover, cancelled the arbitrary allotments and the MPs and MLAs were left high and dry. S IMILARLY, the High Court quashed the “illegal release of land” to RN Prasher, IAS, a former finance commissioner and principal secretary, employed as principal adviser to CM after retirement. Describing this as a PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 25
  • 26. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Despotic Hooda (March 2005-2014) Questionable Pro-Builder Policies of Haryana Government Date Name of policy Salient initiative 09.06.2006 License for land pockets The only condition is that such land locked pockets owned by individuals should not be more than 10% of the licensed area forming part of or granted to the developer. adjoining existing licensed colonies. 19.12.2006 Policy for grant of license and change of land use Came into effect with retrospective effect from 7 June, 2005 Beneficiary / Analysis Land acquisition policy of Haryana Government is based on ‘sectoral development’ approach. In case a private developer, who has been granted a license to develop a project, is not able to acquire some pockets of land in between or on the fringes of the licensed area (“land locked pockets”), HUDA steps in to acquire such land locked pockets on behalf of private developer. BENEFICIARY: BPTP—was facing problem due to certain land locked pockets in Project Parklands— integrated township, so HUDA took over the land locked pockets and transferred it to them for development of the area. After careful consideration of the matter the Governor 1. The Minister here happened to be the Chief Minister himself of Haryana is pleased to convey the policy parameters relating to the grant of license and permission for 2. Even if the Director Town Planning wanted to grant or deny a license he needed the change of land use as under :concurrence of the Chief Minister who held all urban development portfolios. 1. Competent Authority to grant licenses: The licenses shall be granted/ refused by the DTCP with prior 3. The fate of all cooperatives housing was sealed internal concurrence of the State Government at Minister’s Level. The State Government will how- 4. Group housing societies and builders were indirectly given a free hand. ever, exercise appellate powers under the Act. 2. Minimum area for grant of licenses under different 5. Change of land use made easy zones 3. Area under group housing should not exceed 20% Beneficiary: of the sector area. 4. Discontinue licenses to the Cooperative Housing BPTP—its strategy has been to quickly Societies even in Low Potential Zones. No such convert land use from agricultural to land restriction for construction of Group Housing pro- eligible for real estate development and jects. create a vast bank of licensed land. This 5. Change of land use (CLU) applications to be con- helped them launch mid-income housing sidered in conformity with land use proposals of projects in a relatively short time frame even the Development Plans and zoning regulations. during the economic recession in 2008-09. 6. Classification of controlled areas under hyper Apart from everything this helped the potential, high, medium and low potential zones. company generate robust cash flow with reduced capital expenditure. 24.04.2007 License to group of persons under Haryana Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, 1975—for setting up of a colony —as a reputed coloniser. Amendment of policy concerning group of persons 1. Group of persons were sought to be given dated 20th December, 2006 the status of a reputed coloniser for setting 1. Reputed coloniser will be the one who has up a colony. already obtained a license under the Haryana 2. Changed in definition of reputed coloniser Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, as one who has 1975 a. Already obtained a license 2. In case of collaboration agreement -- a developer b. Pays full EDC, service charges and 100% who is not a licensee but applying for a license for bank guarantee for internal development. the first time full EDC, service charges and 100% bank guarantee of internal development works 3. Allowed back door entry for private Policy deemed to have taken before grant of license “so as to safeguard developers—without a license to sign but come into effect w.e.f. the public interest. Those who comply with desiring to make an entry by signing a 19th May, 2004. these stipulations would be termed as reputed collaboration agreement with a group of colonizers.” persons 26 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 27. Date Name of policy Salient initiative Beneficiary / Analysis 30.5.2007 Amended area parame- Utilisation of maximum 5% of the area of a residential What was the need to back date by almost ters for Cyber Parks/ IT sector for establishment of IT Parks/Cyber Parks one year? Parks in residential sectors Ironically all the six licenses for IT City in Gurgaon over 36 acre land in sector 24,25 and Effective for application 25A in Hooda’s tenure have been bagged by received after 7 th DLF Universal. Similarly more than 90 % of the August, 2006. 53 IT parks over 412 acre land are concentrated in Gurgaon. Faridabad managed 6 while Gwal Pahari —a nondescript place got one. 30.9.2007 Policy for release of land Policy formed vide letter no.5/30/2007-2TCP from acquisition 26.10.2007 Policy for release of land The earlier policy formed just 26 days back was superfrom acquisition seded. Salient features of this policy were: 1. Only those applications will be considered for release under section 48(1) where structure existed prior to section 4 and were inhabited. 2. Any factory or commercial establishment which existed prior to section 4 will be considered for release. 3. Any religious institution or any building owned by community will also be considered for release 4. Any land for which an application was made under section 3 of Haryana Development and Regulations of Urban Areas Act, 1975 by the owners prior to award for converting the land into a colony 5. Same for a land where the ownership was established prior to notification under section 4 of the Act. 6. Land may be released in the interest of integrated and planned development where the owners have obtained stay from courts 7. Government may release any land on the grounds other than stated above under section 48(1) of the Act under exceptionally justifiable circumstances but reasons are to be recorded in writing 20-11-07 Change of Land Use for No additional CLU should be required where ground buildings that existed coverage or permissible FAR has already been before declaration of achieved up to 75% of the permissible limits. Controlled Area 01-02-08 Policy for Change of Land use permission for buildings that existed before the declaration of controlled area It is obvious that these revised guidelines were framed to allow big commercial and religious interests to openly misuse the system. 1. All it takes for a builder is to claim and prove—at least on paper that the structure existed prior to section 4 and is inhabited. 2. Why special favours for factories and commercial establishment which existed prior to section 4? This simply indicates that either section 4 was not required or now a back door is being opened. 3. Why should religious institutions be shown special favours? 4. The act seeks to regulate the land use and prevent ill-planned, haphazard urbanisation in Haryana and section 3 deals with detailed process an owner desiring to convert his land into a colony has to follow – in other words it means that the owner prior to the award was himself interested in conversion of the land into colony. 5. When a court has granted stay, where is the question of releasing the land? 27.03.2008 One time relaxation to private schools, whose applications are pending in Education Department for want of recognition of controlled area, to be retained as is, benefit of 60% ground coverage to be given. subsequent floors falling in the setback area, no new construction to be allowed in setback area. Please note how the town and country to apply to applicants, whose applications are planning department is providing legitimacy pending in the Education Department.. to private schools and institutions which are yet to be recognised by the education as per prevalent Education Rules. department lease period is of 20 years. Could it be because the CM’s son-in-law Kunal - Badoo is himself in the field of education? vate school whose applications are pending for recognition in the Education Department PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 27
  • 28. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Date Name of policy Salient initiative 13.05.2008 Policy regarding remov- 1. Removal of limit on maximum height of buildings al of height restriction in Group Housing and Commercial Colonies for of building for group which licenses are issued under Haryana Urban housing colony and Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, commercial colony 1975 2. Town & Country Planning Department notification No. 8DP(ii)-2004/483, dated 22.12.2004 withdrawn Beneficiary / Analysis Policy likely to affect 391 Group Housing society projects in Gurgaon, Bahadurgarh, Daruhera, Faridabad, Jajjar, Karnal, Palwal, Panipat Rewari, Pinjore and Sonipat covering 5451 acre and 57 commercial projects mostly in Gurgaon over 343 acre One of those who applied for 2 licenses in Com zone in Gurgaon, sector 83 was Venod Sharma—a childhood friend of Hooda who applied as Piccadily Hotels 30-5-2008 Radha Swami Satsang Beas Deras Scrutiny fee of `10/- per sq metre on the entire site. In Such a low rate —`10 per sq/ metre return maximum permissible ground coverage and Change of Land Use permission on vacant lands 15.09.2008 Policy regarding grant License only to those Registered Cooperative Housing of license to Cooperative Societies who collaborate with builders/ developers Housing Societies. who have financial and technical expertise for development of residential colonies. 27.3.2009 Registration of independent floors for the residential plots of licensed colonies Registration of independent floors shall be allowed in residential plots—180 sq yards or above. Floor and recognized as a distinct, identifiable property with a separate identification number, along with proportionate rights in the declared common areas and common facilities, rights of access, easements and other ownership rights as well as the right to use, transfer or dispose off the property in accordance with the rules. to separate water supply and electricity connections subject to building regulations/ rules of Power Utilities. BPTP—In Jan 2009, Haryana Government permitted registration of independent floors on residential plots. BPTP took the advantage by switching over from plotted housing to independent floors and started offering three bedroom houses at nominal prices. In this manner the company was able to launch and sell 4,997 units in “Park Elite Floors’ in just 5 months. In August 2009, phase II of Park Elite Floors was raised out of payments received from 94% customers in phase I. By late 2009, BPTP had received `2.41 billion in payments. 29.05.2009 Policy for Low Cost/ Mass Housing Projects 85% of the dwelling units approved under such scheme shall be done through the Government of Haryana at a predetermined cost 20.08.2009 Policy for Low Cost/ Affordable Housing Projects 1. The aim of this policy was to provide different 10 leading builders were licensed 200 acre categories of affordable housing priced at `4 lakh, land in Gurgaon to build 40,000 units. Not a `12.5 lakh, `14 lakh and `16 lakh single apartment has been handed over. 2. This scheme was open only for three months 20.08.2009 Amendment in policy Fallout of a meeting of CM Haryana with colonisers dated 19.12.2006, on 14 July: 29.5.2009 for grant of Group Housing allowed maximum 10% area for group housing Component as a part of over and above existing 20% limit for group plotted colony and housing in a sector increase in density. 214 licenses for 13,448 acre land – for plotted colonies—highest single category of land sold in Haryana. Top beneficiaries who have cornered almost 50% of land for plotted colonies are BPTP (1375 acre), Ansal (1209), Udhar Gagan + Sonika+ Vipul (886), InTime (865), Omaxe (754), Parsavnath (646) and DLF (491 acre). 22.12.2009 Policy on Original Municipal Limits/ Extended MC limits 28 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 29. Date Name of policy 29.04.2010 Occupation Certificate and composition of offence where change of land use permission has expired. Salient initiative Beneficiary / Analysis Change of land-use to general category amount if any, toward increase in the prescribed group housing alone has made different rates if any from the date of application for grant of builders richer by around `4,000 crore. occupation certificate. for unauthorised occupation of the building as well as EDC at updated rates 17.5.2010 Change of Land Use permission for Fuel station/ Retail Outlet, Educational institutes in Controlled Areas. Those wanting to open educational institutes in controlled areas were required to get Genuineness Certificate from the DC before being considered for change of land use permission. DC would issue the NOC after receiving reports from various Departments. On the plea that this delay in decision making was causing harassment to public and in order to speed up the cases, the Government decided that: Retail Outlets in the controlled areas as the DC seeks reports from different departments before issuing the final NOC. issue Genuineness Certificate based on his his/her assessment of the promoter and after seeking report from the Education Department or any other competent regulatory agency. 16.06.2010 Educational Facilities in Uniform norms for Educational Institutions in the Urban Areas/ residential colonies being developed by HUDA, Controlled Areas Colonisers and Change of land use cases in controlled areas as well as municipalities. 24.01.2011 Policy regarding release Release of any land on grounds other than stated of land from acquisition under Section 48(1) under exceptionally justifiable circumstances to be recorded in writing Prime Priorities Areas of Hooda government 1 Policies for Easy and On Demand Change of land Use – Main focus of Hooda government 2 Policies on land acquisition 3 Policies relating to group housing/ plotted colonies 4 Policies related to recognised and yet to be recognised educational institutes 5 Policies for IT Parks/Cyber Parks 6 Policy for Cooperative Housing Societies. 7 Policy for Low Cost/ Mass Housing Projects www indianbuz .c www.indianbuzz.com www.indianbuzz.com www.indianbuzz.com ww ndianbuz com a u uzz.c PPI contd. on next page gf les in id gfiles inside th overnment gfiles inside the government fi e de ve nm nt gfiles inside the government vol vol vol. issue 11 February 2014 vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 ol. issu ss ssu ebruar 01 uar ua 14 29 29
  • 30. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate “blatant misuse of power”, the court quashed the allotment of the property worth millions just three kilometres from Sukhna Lake. “This court cannot shut its eyes to a patently illegal act committed by the State in showing favouritism to a person who had been a senior functionary in the State, “Justices MM Kumar and Rajesh Bindal observed while directing HUDA to refund the amount received from Prasher for the plot. I NCIDENTALLY, the order to allot the land was passed by Hooda. Likewise, it was Hooda who had allowed Ponty Chadha to monopolise the liquor trade in Gurgaon and Faridabad for about eight years till 2006. There was a time when Chadha used to own 130 vends in Gurgaon and 150 in Faridabad. This is when something happened between the Modus operandi: New highways open up land acquisition opportunities for builders (top right); the entry to Dwarka-Gurgaon Expressway (below) two and, while the Haryana government changed the excise policy and system of bidding, Chadha decided to withdraw. The arbitrary and ad-hoc manner in which decisions are taken or altered in Hooda’s tenure can be judged from the following two examples: Dwarka Expressway: A disputed stretch of 4 km is holding up the Northern Peripheral Road, also known as Dwarka Expressway, connecting Dwarka with National Highway 8—an alternate link road between Delhi and Gurgaon. Though this 18 km long road was to ease the traffic on the DelhiGurgaon Expressway, at the last minute powerful builders like Navin Raheja allegedly managed to get the alignment of the Dwarka Expressway changed. Now instead of passing over empty land, over 300 houses in New Palam Vihar Colony would have to be demolished to make way for the road. How to safeguard the interests of the thousands of householders without sacrificing the commercial H AT’S off to the Hooda government for mastering the misuse of change of land use (CLU) and the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. Here are a few illustrative examples of what actually happens: after a government notification to acquire land about three years ago in Ullahwas. Private builders took advantage of the situation and bought land for `3-4 crore per acre. After the final notification, once it became clear that the farmers could not sell their land, the developers reduced the offered price to `2–2.5 crore. Still, the remaining farmers sold off 100-150 acres. Once the sale deeds were executed, the sold lands were "released" by the government. In this process, poor villagers lost their ancestral land but the developers became stinking rich. sis after HUDA issued preliminary notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act—in Ullahwas, Behrampur, Kadarpur, Ghata, Badshapur and Medawas—to acquire 1,417 acres of land for Sectors 58-63, Gurgaon, private builders spread the word that the government would offer low compensation rates. This helped them corner large chunks of land at throwaway prices in June 2009. trap after HSIDC issued a notification to acquire 912 acres of land in Manesar, some smart landowners entered into agreement with private developers and applied for change of land use. Within two years of the final notification, the land acquisition process was scrapped. tion notice, farmers in Jandli, Kamli, Saunda and Sarai Mehdood sold large 30 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 31. MODUS OPERANDI: HOW FAVOURS ARE GRANTED LEGALLY chunks of land to Alaska Construction and Vatika Ltd. Soon after, the farmers entered into a sale deed with Rajnish Sharma, MD of Alaska Construction and Venod Sharma’s cousin. The land was then released under Section 5-A of the Land Acquisition Act. The modus operandi to favour select builders is very simple and ‘legal’. The only condition is that an official government agency, like the HUDA or the Haryana Housing Board or HSIDC, is to be kept in the forefront. Even today, the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, enacted first in the 18th century Bengal, is one of the unusually harsh and draconian laws with lot of discretionary executive powers. Cumbersome and costly procedures make it a dreaded tool of State oppression. It provides the legal basis for acquisition of privately held land by the government for public purposes. “Public purpose” under the Act means educational, health institutions, housing, slum or rural development schemes for general public welfare. The process begins with a preliminary notice under Section 4 of the Act for acquisition of land needed or likely to be needed for any public purpose and a notification from the district collector’s office is published in the Official Gazette and two daily newspapers. The biggest flaw in the Act is that— even in those cases where the land is genuinely required in public interest —there is a considerable difference between the market value of the property and price offered to the landowner by the land acquisition officers. Once this notification is made, the owner is prohibited from selling his property, disposing it off or doing anything that might affect its value or compensation—without the prior permission of the collector. In rural India, where agricultural land is being passed on from one generation to another and there are multiple owners and joint families, this puts the fear of God in the mind of the landowner. Exploiting this loophole in the law, private builders, developers and colonisers then approach farmers and landowner, offering them slightly more than what they expect from the government. Most farmers give in at this stage. However, if the landowner refuses, the government department issues a declaration under Section 6. The Deputy Commissioner, or any other competent authority, may then take possession of the land immediately, which shall thereupon vest absolutely with the government, free from all claims, whatsoever. Usually this makes the most reluctant landowners/ farmers to accept the builder’s offer. Once the deal is brokered, the new owner—the builder—approaches the TCP Department to award a license for development of land in the stipulated Master Plan area, under Section 9, and withdraw the acquisition notice. As per law, the government is at liberty to withdraw from acquisition of land under Section 16 of the Act at any stage before the physical possession of land. So, in a smooth and legal manner, the government withdraws its acquisition notice and private developer makes his millions from the instant price escalation. Another related issue is change of land use. This invariably requires payment of EDC and official conversion charge, besides an “unofficial convenience fee” of anywhere between `25-50 lakh per acre, for smooth, speedy and hassle-free change of land use. The change of land use seemingly has been one of the unwritten key policies of Hooda government, which has allowed conversion of 21,000-acre land from agricultural to residential, industrial or commercial over the last seven odd years. PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 31
  • 32. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Development Overdrive? H ARYANA today is not a State, but real estate. Agricultural, forest or defence, every bit of land in any corner of the State is up for sale. And the person responsible for it—Hooda —is behaving not as the Chief Minister but Chief Marketing and Business Development Officer of Haryana. First let’s understand why Haryana is in need for such developmental over-drive? The simple answer is that Haryana envelops Delhi on three sides with well defined roads, rail, national, international airports and other infrastructure. Almost 29 National Highways, covering over 1,461 km, 2,494 km-long State Highways and South Asia’s oldest major road Grand Trunk (GT) Road pass through the State. Gurgaon is today the fastest growing and most talked-about business hub with the highest concentration of multinational corporate offices. It is soon going to have the `1,000 crore Rapid Metro Rail—India’s first wholly private (IL&FS 74 per cent equity share and DLF 26 per cent) railway project. But, while Gurgaon has so far overshadowed other areas like Faridabad, Sonepat, Panipat, and Karnal, this hierarchical imbalance is not going to last long. Even many insignificant and relatively unheard of places like Kondli, Manesar, Rewari, Hissar, Palwal, Bhiwani, Bahadurgarh, Jhajjar and Bawal are queuing up to break the economic glass ceiling. The effect of all this is a feverish pitch to acquire land and identify new areas for infrastructure development to meet the needs of the growing population for luxury, economy and low-cost housing, commercial and entertainment centres, public utilities, parks, and other urban civic facilities. 32 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 The biggest blockbuster, of course, is the 1,483 km-long Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC)—a mega US$90 billion infrastructure project connecting Delhi and Mumbai—being built with financial and technical aid from Japan. The highlights of this project include a Golden Quadrilateral National Highway and a Multi-modal High Axle Load Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) running parallel to each other between Delhi and Mumbai. Starting from Dadri, in Delhi NCR, these would pass through six States—Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and terminate at Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Over 60 per cent area of Haryana is directly or indirectly influenced by DMIC. Several top-of-theline industrial estates, clusters, industrial hubs and investment regions, like Sonipat-Kundli and Manesar-Bawal, are being developed along this corridor with the help of grants and loans from Indian and Japanese governments as well as investments by Japanese and Indian firms. The project area of this ambitious DMIC project extends up to 150 km on both sides of the DelhiMumbai Dedicated Freight Corridor and opens floodgate of opportunities along NH-8, NH-2, NH-1 and NH -10 for industrial, urban and supporting infrastructure. Already Bawal has evolved as a mega industrial hub with a large numbers of multinational companies lining up to set up their manufacturing bases. Besides these, two investment regions at Manesar-Bawal-Nimarana and Kundli-Sonepat, as well as two mega industrial areas are coming up at Faridabad-Palwal and Rewari-Hissar to capitalise on the locational advantages. A 135.6 km-long Western Peripheral Expressway, or Kundli-MansearPalwal (KMP) Expressway, is going to connect Kundli, Sonipat, Manesar, Gurgaon, Faridabad and Palwal. It will cross NH-1 near Kundli, NH-2 at Palwal, NH-8 at Manesar and NH-10 at Western Bahadurgarh. Many investors are investing in residential and commercial projects on both sides of the expressway. Since the commencement of work on the Expressway, land prices in Kundli have increased from `25 lakh per acre to `1.5 crore per acre. Almost 242.55 acre land from 14 villages has been acquired for Dwarka Expressway, also called Northern Express Road or Northern Peripheral Road, which will cut down travel time between Delhi, Gurgaon and Manesar. This is going to be the lifeline for major housing projects in Gurgaon-Manesar. Almost 26 new sectors (99 to 115 and 58 to 67) are being developed along this Expressway. Phase III of Metro rail on this route will link IGI Airport and Dwarka. Further, 12 specialised hubs—including Education City (5,000 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 33. acres), Sample Township (8,401 acres), Cyber City (470 acres), Bio-sciences City (1,370 acres), Jahangirpuri-Badli Township (14,226 acres), Fashion City (544 acres), Entertainment City (346 acres), World Trade City (650 acres), Dry Port City (1,770 acres), Leather City (691 acres) and Leisure City (1,853 acres)—would be developed along the KMP Expressway. The Southern Peripheral Road and the Northern Peripheral Road (Dwarka Expressway) will form a ring around Gurgaon, allowing long-distance inter-city and interState vehicular traffic to bypass the Gurgaon Expressway (NH8). That’s not all, also on the anvil are a Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway with the largest 32-lane toll plaza in Asia on NH8, a 8-lane flyover on BadarpurFaridabad stretch of Mathura Road and a 4-lane highway in Yamuna Nagar and Panchkula—connecting Haryana to Chandigarh (without entering Punjab). Haryana already has Metro Rail connecting Gurgaon, Faridabad and Bahadurgarh to different parts of Delhi. Many universities and colleges are coming up in Khanpur, Murthal, Karnal, Mewar and Faridabad. A women’s university and Rajiv Gandhi University—on the pattern of Oxford University in Sonipat—a central university in Mahendragarh, Lala Lajpat Rai University of Animal Sciences in Hissar and the first defense university in Gurgaon should transform Haryana into an international commercial and educational hub in the next 5-7 years. Half of Haryana’s over 20,412 sq kmform part of NCR India's largest and world's second-largest agglomeration with a population of 22,157,000. Haryana also takes pride in the fact that large part of its area is covered under the NCR, for which NCRPB is providing soft loans up to 75 per cent of the project cost. Prima facie it may seem that Hooda stole a march over Sheila Dikshit who used to say that people from neighboring States could come, work and use Delhi’s infrastructure. Hooda’s logic makes better sense from the point of view of NCR—to develop Haryana as a Builders line the main roads of Gurgaon to sell their projects sub-region so that people from nearby areas do not have to migrate or travel to Delhi and the influx of Delhi’s floating population is arrested. But, Hooda has ended up causing more harm than good to Haryana. In the speed to ‘market’ Haryana and develop it, he has ended up widening the gap between the rich and the poor and ignored the real needs of people. Haryana needs development, but not at the cost of its citizens. How many farmers in Haryana, or their children, are going to benefit from the integrated investment regions, mega industrial areas, malls, multiplexes, IT cities, educational, entertainment, world trade and fashion hubs being set up on the land of their forefathers? Some of them have suddenly found tonnes of money in their pockets, but without the means to spend it wisely. In most cases, the price of all this will have to be paid in terms of depression, suicides, family disputes, drunken brawls, oppression of widows, exploitation of weaker sections and social tensions over distribution of the compensation amount. Likewise, how many of the literate farming youngsters would suddenly land up with smart, sophisticated white collar jobs in IT, multinational and mega-million dollar corporate giants? A bulk of the vacancies in such companies will be filled by highly technical foreigners, NRIs and highly qualified public school-educated Indians and the poor citizens of Haryan might be deemed fit only to serve as low-paid security guards, peons, drivers or conductors in DTC and Haryana Roadways buses, or low-level constables in Delhi and Haryana Police. Is this is what’s called development, progress and prosperity? Who wins if Haryana and Haryanvis lose? PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 33
  • 34. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate interest of the builders/developers, is proving to be a tricky legal issue. That is besides the interests of people of Sai Kunj, New Palam Vihar PhaseIII in Gurgaon, whose land too was proposed to be acquired by Haryana government. Northern Express Road: About 618.5 acres were acquired from Pawala Khasroorpur, Chauma and Kherki Dhaula villages for construction of a 150-metre wide and 25 kilometre-long Northern Express Road. This was expected to cost `120 crore and reduce the travel time between Delhi and Gurgaon, but nothing has been done because of protracted litigations. Fifteen kilometres of this road passes through suburban Gurgaon and 10 km through Delhi. As things stand today, while HUDA has acquired the land, it cannot take How Uddar Gagan Properties got absolute monopoly in Rohtak Licenses 16 Area Land Licenses in Hooda Regime since 2005 Rohtak 958 acre Jop International Ltd. RGH 6.09 Omaxe Construction  Plotted 77.48 Omaxe Construction  Plotted 41.91 One Point Realty   Plotted 59.66 One Point Realty   Addl. Plotted 13.44 Parsavnath Developers  Plotted 118.19 Ramesh Chander Plotted 4.4 Sharad farms and holdings   GH 14.81 Sonika Properties   Plotted 175.64 Sonika Properties   Plotted 173.03 Sonika Properties   Plotted 19.97 Uddar Gagan Properties Pvt. Ltd. PLOTTED 92.73 Uddar Gagan Properties Pvt. Ltd. PLOTTED 15.8 Uddar Gagan Properties Pvt. Ltd. Addl. Plotted 32.45 Uddar Gagan Properties   & Others Plotted 60.43 Uddar Gagan Properties   & Others Plotted 51.89 Total 34 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 636.75 Acre 66.5 % 957.92 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 35. CRY IN THE WILDERNESS O Such photographs are used for newspaper advertisements to show ongoing construction to woo consumers possession because of a restraint order by the Punjab and Haryana High Court till the final order. In the first place, there was no need for the road to pass through residential areas. Secondly, the original path was allegedly altered in the Master Plan after it was discovered that it might otherwise run through a commercial plot. Most builder friendly CM Hooda should go down in history as the most builder friendly Chief Minister. His is one of the most corrupt, pro-builder and anti-farmer Chief Minister Haryana has seen in the last couple of decades. Political pundits allege that big builders, corporate houses and industrialists run the government; he is just a proxy— www.indianbuzz.com FEEBLE VOICES NE can’t but feel sorry for Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who is wearing a crown of thorns. At any given day, he has more enemies within the Congress than outside. What is worse, most of his one-time friends, supporters and cabinet colleagues are among his sworn enemies. The list of such friends-turned-foes includes four-time MLA and heavyweight former State cabinet minister Kiran Choudhry and her daughter Shruti Choudhry, the Lok Sabha MP from Bhiwani-Mahendragarh. Kiran Choudhry’s father, late Choudhry Surender Singh, was two- Rao Inderjit Singh time MP and Haryana Agriculture Minister, and her grandfather, Bansi Lal, was the Chief Minister of Haryana. Likewise, former PWD Minister Randeep Singh Surjewala, former Finance Minister Capt Ajay Singh Yadav, his son Chiranjeev Rao, who heads the Haryana Youth Congress, Gurgaon MP Rao Inderjit Singh, former Union Minister Kumari Capt Ajay Singh Yadav Selja, AICC general secretary Birender Singh and Rajya Sabha MP Ishwar Singh are all friends-turned-foes. Many senior Congress leaders, like Capt Ajay Singh Yadav, Kumari Selja, Rao Inderjit Singh Kumari Selja and Birender Singh, have gone to the extent of accusing Hooda of a development bias and favouritism towards members of a particular caste in government jobs. The Chairman of Haryana Staff Selection Commission and a close relative of Chief Minister Hooda allegedly played a key role in most of these appointments. Significantly two arch rivals—Capt Yadav and Rao Inderjeet Singh—shed their differences and joined hands to support the demand of 51 Ahirwal-dominated villages of Rewari District whose 455 acres of land was sought to be acquired by HUDA to develop Birender Singh two residential sectors. PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 35
  • 36. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Questions for Hooda 1 Has Haryana government ever investigated the antecedents and credentials of the companies before they were allowed to acquire land in Haryana and engage in colonisation, buildings and consolidations of land? 2 Has any one, including the incometax department, ever enquired the source of funds flowing into these companies, as also the fact whether their net worth matches to that of the value of land they own, or have acquired? 3 Has the Haryana government checked the antecedents of the Chairman/ Managing Director/ Directors of the companies engaged in land acquisition and colonisation? 4 Has the Haryana government, or any relevant agency, investigated the changing shareholding pattern of the companies that have acquired huge land in Haryana? It is suspected that by changing the shareholding pattern -- by selling a big stake -these companies transfer the land in the guise of transferring the share, due to which the government has suffered huge revenue losses. 5 Has any concrete action been taken by the Land Revenue Department to assess and recover the said losses? 6 Has the Haryana government asked for compliance reports from builders, colonisers and land consolidators regarding the completion of the projects, as claimed by them in the newspapers? 36 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 7 How many builders and colonisers have been fined by the government on the issue of non-compliance? 8 Has the Haryana government investigated why builders, colonisers and land consolidators are charging extra amount on flimsy grounds from customers due to the delays in the project, whereas the customer is not responsible for any delay. 9 Has the Haryana government developed any mechanism to address and rescue the customers from the clutches of builder’s mafia for non-compliance of the terms and contracts of the buyer-seller agreement and delay of the project? 10 How many of cases have been filed against various builders in various courts, including the Punjab and Haryana High Court, and what are the issues these cases raise? 11 How almost 1,684 sq km forest area in the State has become barren? 12 What was the rationale behind Chief Minister Hooda holding all departments related to land and urban development with himself? Was there no competent MLA in entire Haryana Assembly or was it to control land deals? 13 It is alleged that as the Chief Minister you are responsible for conversion of vast stretches (approximately 3,500 sq km) of fertile and cultivable land into jungles of concrete. Your comment. 14 Why did you change the existing policy on April 24, 2007, to redefine the term “reputed coloniser”? Was it done with the ulterior motive to pave the way for backdoor entry of certain developers of your choice? 15 Why did you give one-time relaxation to private schools run by your coterie through Town and Country Planning Department on March 27, 2008, despite their applications being pending with education department for want of recognition? Was it done to accommodate your sonin-law, who is in the business of education and has ambitious plans in this sector? 16 Is it true that your policy dated September 15, 2008, regarding grant of licences to only those cooperative housing societies who enter into collaboration with reputed builders with certain financial qualification, was allegedly created to benefit the builders of your choice? 17 Why Hooda gave an extended time limit to builders to construct the project upto 15 years, by passing and earlier limit of two years from date of possession. It is alias that it was done and the order was issued to favor the group of builders of Hooda’s choice? 18 Is it true that your government has not yet utilised the amount of approximately `10,000 crore collected towards External Development Charges (EDC) from the end consumers through the builders in the last five years for creation of basic amenities? www.gfilesindia.com
  • 37. 19 Why did you gift HUDA residential plots to present and former Haryana MPs and MLAs at Mansa Devi Complex, Panchkula, at throwaway prices of `28 lakh each when the worth of the those plots was at least `1.5 crore each in the open market? 20 Is it true that the beneficiaries in the above largesse included your son Deepender Singh Hooda, besides Kumari Shelja, Venod Sharma, Kiran Chaudhary, Navin Jindal, Raghuveer Kadian, Randeep Surjewala, Phool Chand Mulana, Kiran Chaudhary, Captain Ajay Singh Yadav, Chander Mohan, Hansraj Bhardwaj and Shamsher Singh Surjewala and select officers of your choice? 21 Why was the direction of Dwarka Expressway changed? Was it done to safeguard the commercial interest of some of your favoured builders/developers at the cost of hundreds of residents of Palam Vihar area in Haryana? 22 Why did you change the original path of Northern Express Road? It is alleged that it was sanctioned to please some of your favourite builders and developers? 23 Why did you shift the powers of the DTCP to grant or refuse the licences to the office of the minister in-charge, which happens to be the Chief Minister? Don’t you agree that this was done to directly give massive benefits to builders like BPTP? 24 Why the State defined’ Reputed Builder’ to those allotted the first and the single licence under HUDA 1975 Act? 25 Is it true that you favoured prominent builders -- like, DLF, Unitech, BPTP, Ansals, Vatika Ltd, Suncity Projects, Emaar MGF, Bestech Ltd, Raheja Developers, TDI and Omaxe -- in May 2009 by one-time relaxation under the garb of reserving 10 per cent area for low-cost housing in their group housing colonies, which allegedly no builder complied with? 26 Why no action has been taken against the said defaulting builders? 27 Why did you bring in the policy of removal of height restrictions for group housing and commercial projects? This order allegedly doled out benefits/favours to 391 group housing societies and 57 commercial projects. 28 What was the rationale behind increasing the per hectare population density in Haryana? 29 You have allegedly created three Master Plans which will create concrete jungles without providing the provisions of water, electricity, sewerage, etc. Your comment? 30 As per the norms, one plan is implemented in full and only than another plan is envisaged. You have stated that you will implement the Master Plan of 2031. Who has given you this mandate as your mandate is only till 2014? Are you so sure of retaining power for another two decades? 31 Why have you created a virtual monopoly of builders in different parts of the State? Like in Rohtak, where different subsidiaries of Sonica builders control 66.5 per cent of the total land licences allotted in your regime. The same story is there in every district of Haryana. 32 Why no action is being taken against the shell companies and subsidiaries of various builders which are out to bypass the land holding laws in the State and also avoid registry charges on transfer of ownership of immovable property? 33 It is alleged that you and the State machinery have helped BPTP suddenly become the biggest and richest company in the State, with their business taking a quantum jump after you became CM. Your comment. 34 Why did you reduce the compounding and conversion fees for commercial properties? It is alleged that the decision was meant to benefit the select violators of building by-laws, who have also cheated the State exchequer. 35 It is alleged that the proposed changes in the Master Plan were leaked to favoured builders like Ramprastha, BPTP, etc., who took advantage of such information and purchased huge stretches of land in the very sectors, hence benefitting to the tune of thousands of crores. 36 It is alleged that the Haryana government is run by de-fecto Chief Ministers like Venod Sharma, Kunal Bhadoo, Arvind Walia, Anil Sharma, Sameer Gehlaut, KP Singh and Kabul Chawla. What made you allow these extra constitutional authorities to act on your behalf? PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 37
  • 38. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate a rubber stamp. An example of how prominent builders manage to bend policy matters is seen in the meeting chaired by Hooda with representatives of DLF, Unitech, BPTP, Ansals, Vatika Ltd, Suncity Projects, Emaar MGF, Bestech Ltd, Raheja Developers, TDI and Omaxe in May 2009. Assembly elections were round the corner and the government wanted the developers to announce populist low-cost housing schemes. S O, at the behest of Vatika Ltd, Hooda announced a “one-time relaxation” for all those builders who applied for Group Housing Colony as part of their plotted colony by the next day and were prepared to reserve 10 per cent area for low-cost housing. In fine print it meant that a builder who agreed to do so would get to build four additional large flats per acre. In one instance, the government even announced 40,000 affordable homes for `12.5-`16 lakh each. About 10 top-notch builders were H given licenses for 200 acres of land in Gurgaon. But till date, not a single apartment is nearing completion. An irrefutable fact is that no one wants to build low-cost housing projects for the poor. The builders keep exploiting the sentiments behind it to get favours for themselves, but do not actually take such projects seriously. Another example of behind-thescene administrative support is how HUDA first earmarked one million sq. ft land for open auction in Gurgaon’s Sector 29, but kept unnecessarily delaying the auction to give the builders a chance to sell their properties at high rates. A cruel joke, however, is how the new Gurgaon Master Plan tries to pack all economically weaker and low-income groups—expected to be around 42 lakh plus in 2031—on just Hooda’s coterie aryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has been ruling the State with the help of his trusted officers for the last nine years. Hooda appointed ML Tayal, a 1976 batch IAS officer of ML Tayal 38 Builders’ mantra: Build dream houses, sewer pipes and civic amenities can wait! gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 the Haryana cadre, as his first Principal Secretary in March 2005. Tayal, who hails from Hissar, was his college friend and both had good rapport. A keen golfer, Tayal was known as a frank and blunt officer. It is reported Krishan Khandelwal Chhattar Singh that Tayal was brought in because he had the experience of Town and Country Planning. Sources disclosed that Chhattar Singh, a 1980 batch IAS officer, who was already working as Additional Principal Secretary was brought in as Principal Secretary at the recommendation of Tayal when the SS Dhillon www.gfilesindia.com
  • 39. latter’s term was over. Hooda has looked after the interests of both the officers, given the long association and being privy to Hooda’s secrets, by respectably rehabilitating them. Tayal is the member of Competition Commission of India and Chhattar Singh is a Member of the Union Public Service Commission. Sudeep Singh Dhillon, a senior IAS officer of 1984, was appointed as the new Principal Secretary on August 30, 2013. Dhillion, an upright officer, has varied experience of administration. He has also worked as Vice-Chairman of HUDA. The second most important officer is a 1985 batch officer, Dr Krishan Kumar Khandelwal. As Principal Secretary to www.indianbuzz.com the Chief Minister, he looks after media and public relations. Due to his innovative ideas and media management, Hooda won a good number of seats in the last assembly elections. Ironically, Dhillon and Khandelwal are at loggerheads but both are loyal to the Chief Minister. It is reported that apart from these two important functionaries of the Haryana Government, TC Gupta, Director General and Special Secretary, Town and Country Planning and Urban Estates Departments, 1987-batch IAS officer of Haryana cadre is eyes and ears of Hooda regarding land-related matters. 50 hectares of land in Sector 68. This means confining them into unhygienic and insanitary ghettoes having population density of more than 1,125 people per hectare. In his two stints over the last seven years, Hooda has broken all records of the past 23 years and granted over 1,000 licenses to builders to develop all kinds of plots, group housing societies, commercial plots, IT Parks, IT Cities and low-cost housing projects. While 12 of his predecessors managed to grant licenses for just 8,550.32 acres, Hooda has granted licenses for 21,447 acres. A majority of these licenses PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 39
  • 40. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Dwarka Expressway: Neither express nor way—just a speculators’ den T HE Dwarka Expressway is a builder’s paradise and customer’s nightmare. Bhupinder Singh Hooda must have been a dreamer in his life and must have been a good sketchmaster, believing in creating castles, towns, casinos on paper. The moment he got an opportunity to turn his visions into reality, he used the Haryana Development Authority’s map and drew a straight line bordering Gurgaon, which is now called the Dwarka-Gurgaon Expressway. It is a dreamland and goldmine for builders. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the growth rate of India is 3.2 per cent. The inference of this is that there is no major industrial activity happening in India. So, one needs a place where the resources can be placed for profit. Hooda has facilitated all the speculators and provided them with their playground—the DwarkaGurgaon Expressway. As per real estate experts, the expressway is a gold mine worth `2 lakh crore. It is definitely not just a connecting road from Dwarka to Gurgaon—but much more. There is not a single small or big builder who is not present there. Their colourful hoardings indicate the boundary walls of their money spinning mill, acres of what was once flourishing farmland. 40 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 41. gfiles team travelled to the expressway to ascertain first hand what is happening on the ground. It takes almost an hour to locate the expressway as nobody except the builders knows the exact location. One starts off from Palam Vihar’s 10-feet street, or the chaotic Old Bus Stand of Gurgaon, approaching a 20-feet road further and then going zig-zag through the village. Then you see a bizarre scene, the actual sketch drawn by Hooda on the ground – his dreamland. Nobody knows where the expressway connects or what it connects. The moment you reach the expressway and travel from one end to another, it is not a smooth journey at all. The obstacles are many – varying from open nalas, blockades, a temple and even houses. Or, suddenly the road just disappears. One has to go through a twisting kachha track to reconnect with the road. The only roads which seem to be of some calibre are the ones leading to builder plots. The builders have started basic construction, just to advertise in newspapers that actual site construction is going on. This is to collect huge amounts of money from unsuspecting and honest customers, who are sitting miles away visualising designer houses at sites which are just fields and mud. The gfiles team visited one of the builders to see his model villa. It was truly a dream house. The price tag: `4.5 crore, but without water, electricity, road, hospital, schools, etc. The builders are there in full strength. When the expressway will see the light of day, nobody knows. But the villages and their acquired lands are already reduced to slums, turning the lives of the people there upside down. PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 41
  • 42. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate and bulk of the land in the last sevenand-a-half years of Hooda rule have been cornered by a clique of just 33 builders. These include Countrywide Promoters, Ansal Properties & Infrastructure, DLF, New Gurgaon Home Developers, Intime Promoters (TDI), Omaxe Housing & Developers, Unitech, Vatika Land Base, Parsavnath Developers, Emaar MGF Land, IREO KSS Properties, Sonika, Chintals India, AN Buildwell, Bestech India, Uddar Gagan, Reliance Haryana SEZ, Rangoli Projects, India Bulls Estates, Vipul Infrastructure Developers, Dwarkadhis Buildwell, Raheja Developers, Ramprastha Buildwell, Pioneer Urban Land & Infrastructure, Herman Fin Properties, Grandeur Real Estate, Uppal Housing, Jai Krishna Artec JV, Mapsco Buildwell, Parveen Gupta, Vipin Gupta, ERA Infrastructure, Martial Buildcon, Desert Moon Realtors Pvt Ltd and Orris Infrastructure. Each of them can be said to be a direct beneficiary of the Hooda’s benevolence in the sense that they have not only have managed to get large banks of 100 acres, but in a cool, calculated manner have been given virtual monopoly in different parts of the State. H OODA is the uncrowned king of Rohtak, which is often referred to as Haryana’s political capital. In Jat dominated Rohtak, Hooda’s home district and political constituency, a clique of Sharad Farms and Holdings, Sonika Properties and Uddar Gagan Properties—all three subsidiaries of the consortium formed by Zee TV’s Essel Group, Action Group and Odeon Builders—has acquired almost 636.75 acres of land. This gives them a virtual monopoly in the market with 66.5 per cent land licenses in the 42 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 43. A housing complex amidst a green belt flouts all ecological norms (left); rising dust adds to the pollution (bottom left) Many of the builders use shell companies and subsidiaries for obtaining the land—circumventing the land ceiling act, done away with recently. A common practice among developers is to have a matrix of companies to conceal the actual purchase. At a later date, the subsidiary, or the shell company, is bought or sold with the land to avoid registry charges, even though this violates the law on transfer of ownership of immovable property. Planned urban disaster T district since the day Hooda became CM in 2005. Similarly, in Panipat, Ansal Properties & Infrastructure has bagged 346 acre land and 25 per cent of all licenses. The same story is repeated in Sonipat where Intime Promoters has managed to get 887 acres of land and overall 29 per cent of all licenses. Ansal Properties & Infrastructure holds 75.6 per cent, i.e., 167.34 out of 221.24 acres licensed in Yamuna Nagar-Jagadhari and 125 acre, that is 33 per cent land licensed in Kurukshetra. Omaxe Construction commands Palwal market with 35.6 per cent land, while Baderwals Infraprojects, VPN Real Estate and Choice Real Estate Developers have complete monopoly with 100 per cent land licenses in Mahendergarh, Sirsa and Bawal, www.indianbuzz.com Many of the builders use shell companies and subsidiaries for obtaining the land—circumventing the land ceiling act, done away with recently. respectively. Countrywide Promoters is the undisputed king of Faridabad with 1,282 acre of the 2,402 acre land sold—53.4 per cent of all the licenses. Gurgaon is a different ball game. Though Ansal Properties, Anant Raj Industries, Countrywide Promoters, Commander Realtors, Chintals India and Bestech India have all managed to have their own pockets of influence in the new areas, DLF Ltd has the overall edge in Gurgaon. HE fact that three unwanted, undesirable and untimely Master Plans 2021, 2025 and 2031 were introduced within 7 years is symbolic of a methodical and brutal exploitation of residential, commercial and industrial land under Hooda’s leadership. The hidden agenda behind these frequent changes in Master Plans was allegedly to favour few individuals and builders. Only Hooda can say what he gained; the only thing that appreciated in the process was real estate prices, that too in a few pockets of the State. In the overall context, Haryana and its citizens will continue to pay the price in the years to come. One of the first things that Hooda did after coming to power was to change the industrial policy of the State and make it favourable for real estate development. Within 15 months of taking over, Hooda released the first draft of Master Plan 2021 on July 11, 2006. Intime Promoters, Countrywide, Omax, Vipul Infrastructure, Bestech India, PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 43
  • 44. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Parshavnath Developers, Unitech and M3M were the direct beneficiaries. They allegedly went on a buying spree at the right time and gained heavily from the price escalation after Master Plan 2021. Within next six months, Hooda notified the final Master Plan on February 5, 2007. This plan saw many land use changes from SEZ/ public and semi-public/industrial use to residential use in Sectors 37C, 37D, 95, and 107 of Gurgaon. Significantly, Ramprastha Builders made a fortune buying land in these sectors. The company purchased lands in the name of its subsidiary firms Ramprastha Estates, Ramprastha Greens, Ramprastha Towers and Ramprastha Buildwell in Sectors 37D, 92, 95. According to informed sources, Hooda is allegedly one of the silent partners in Ramprastha Builders. The State government converted 500 acres of agricultural land in Sectors 63A and 67A of Gurgaon to residential land use in the draft Master Plan 2025, released on October 4, 2010, and notified on May 24, 2011. A year later, 2,200 acres of SEZ land was converted into residential/commercial use, and parts of Sector 115 (81.57 acres)—earlier earmarked for public and semi-public use—was converted to commercial use on November 15, 2012 in the draft Master Plan 2031, released and notified on September 4, 2012. The only explanation for such unprecedented and frequent revision is lobbying by coterie of builders, developers, brokers and politicians to drastically increase the value of their cheaply acquired lands and make a fast buck. The real impact of the Gurgaon-Mansesar Master Plans is that even the price of land in relatively nondescript areas like Wazirpur and Hayatpur, acquired for `25 lakh about a decade ago, has skyrocketed to over `6-7 crore an acre. 44 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 T HE Gurgaon Master Plan bypasses the NCR Planning Board’s priorities and is being described as “environment-unfriendly” and damaging for the green areas and natural water bodies in the already ecologically fragile area. Many of the new areas in the Master Plan are sought to be carved out of natural water storage and drainage systems, including nullah’s and bunds. For Gurgaon, which already has acute shortage and absence of any natural source of water for the growing urban population, this has serious consequences in the long run. The main drawbacks in the Master Plans are: 1. Hidden agenda seems to be expansion of real estate: Interestingly, the only thing that changes with every revision of the Master Plan (MP) is land available for residential, commercial and industrial development. For instance, residential land increases from 14,930 hectares (MP 2021) to 15,148 hectares (MP 2025) and, then, 16,010 hectares (MP 2031). Similarly, commercial land increases from 1,404 hectares (MP 2021) to 1,429 hectares (MP 2025) and 1,616 hectares (MP 2031), while industrial land decreases from 5,441 hectares (MP 2021) to 5,431 hectares (MP 2025) and 4,613 hec- Builder hoardings abound every open tract in Gurgaon (right); one of the many unfinished construction sites (below) tares (MP 2031). The ulterior motive behind the new Master Plan seems to be to allegedly benefit some close friends of Hooda. The entire process is kept so secret that only a handful of people with inside information get the advantage. 2. Fault lines: The Master Plan seems to overestimate the rate of population growth to somehow justify rapid urban expansion and addition of 58 new sectors to the existing 57 sectors. 3. Just plans, no action: It makes no sense to release three Master Plans within 7 years and with so many changes between the Draft and the final Master Plan. It defies logic to talk about Master Plan 2031 when the planning goals and objectives of even 2021 and 2025 have not been met. 4. Arbitrary and unfair You scratch my back, I will scratch yours – this is the mantra for the strong politician-bureaucrat-builder nexus in Haryana. Politicians and bureaucrats invest their surplus and ill-gotten wealth in the construction www.gfilesindia.com
  • 45. industry. The builders, in turn, reciprocate by providing funds and logistical support during the elections. An industrial zone, mentioned in the Gurgaon-Manesar Master Plans 2021 and 2025, is suddenly converted into agriculture zone in Master Plan 2031. That apart, its land owners are arbitrarily denied permission to get the land use changed. If the idea behind revision of 2025 Plan was to reallocate the land associated with the failed SEZ, what was the justification of acquisition of land in Wazirpur, Hayatpur, Mohammadpur, Gharouli Khurd, Gharouli Kalan and Harsaru for creation of new residential and commercial facilities in Sectors 36B, 37B, parts of 37D, 68, 88A, 88B, 89A, 89B, 95A, 95B and 99A. Though Sector 16 was reserved for public and semi-public use, it was changed to Special Zone where group housing, commercial and entertainment projects are allowed. Increase in population density from 250 to 625 people per hectare of Sectors (part 42), 43, 53, and 54 is www.indianbuzz.com another disguised attempt to keep the builders happy. Definitions, as well as rules and regulations for ‘entertainment’, ‘world trade’ and ‘fashion hubs’ mentioned in the Master Plan are not clear. T HE list of builders who benefitted from the frequent changes in land use also include Ashok Solomon-owned Chintel Group— having 396 acres of prime land in Sectors 104, 106, 108, 109 and 114 in Gurgaon—Vatika Group, M3M, DLF, Bestech, Pareena Group and Indiabulls Real Estate Limited. India Bulls Managing Director Narendra Gehlaut, an electrical engineer from Delhi College of Engineering and law graduate from University of Delhi, is the brother-in-law of Deepinder Hooda. Deepinder’s wife, Shweta Mirdha, is sister of Congress MP Jyoti Mirdha, who is married to Narendra Gehlaut—son of Krishna Gehlaut, a former Haryana Congress minister. Anil and Gautam Bhalla of Vatika Builders Ltd—having business dealings with Venod Sharma—bought 700 acres in R-Zone and turned a billionaire overnight. Similarly, Ramprastha Group is developing Ramprastha City—a group-housing project for Army Welfare Housing Organisation (AWHO) in Sector 95, Gurgaon. All said and done, the worst examples of mis-governance in the Hooda’s tenure was how hundreds of acres of fertile land was forcible acquired from farmers with the help of police, to develop SEZs in the State. The result was hundred of litigations, which are pending in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Despite this, Sabeer Bhatia, the founder of Hotmail, decided to withdraw from the Nano city project after one year of starting it in Panchkula. Likewise, RIL’s 1,383,68 acres of aborted SEZ project at Gurgaon and 2,000 acres of Industrial Model Township (IMT) in Ambala were some of the most embarrassing moments for the Hooda government. g PPI contd. on next page gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 45
  • 46. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate How Countrywide Promoters (BPTP) created a virtual monopoly in Faridabad & Gurgaon Licenses Area Land Licenses in Hooda Regime since 2005 102 Faridabad 2402 acre Achivers GH 30.27 Ajay Enterpriese Pvt Ltd RGH 52.83 Ansal Infrastructure    COMM (RZ) 1.73 Bhagat Steel & Forging IT Park  5.87 BVM Projects GH 10.38 Cadillac Buildwell   GH 41.53 Cadillac Buildwell   GH 8.8 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 221.93 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 123.09 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 108.67 Countrywide Promoters   GH 17.97 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 88.54 Countrywide Promoters   GH 55.98 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 19.42 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 51.1 Countrywide Promoters   GH 10.63 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 279.57 Countrywide Promoters   COMM (RZ) 3.81 Countrywide Promoters   GH 2.5 Countrywide Promoters   GH 13.19 53.4 % 1281.62 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 11.17 Land licenses in Acre Faridabad Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 7.24 Countrywide Promoters   GH 16.02 Countrywide Promoters   GH 10 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 56.15 Countrywide Promoters   GH 2.89 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 17.67 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 27.17 Countrywide Promoters   GH 14 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 35.28 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 11.11 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 7.7 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 35.88 Countrywide Promoters   Plotted 32.94 Crown Buildtech   COMM (RZ) 1.14 34.48 Crown Infra Build   GH 18.05 Crown Technobuild GH 6.98 Crown Technobuild IT Park  8.31 DD Township GH 6.83 123.2 DD Township GH 13.48 DD Township Plotted 102.89 Deva Buildtech   GH 10.5 Dove Infrastructure   IT Park  8.5 Ferrous Infrastructure Plotted 102.98 GE Maxi Infrastructure   COMM (RZ) 3.94 GH: Group Housing; RGH: Residential Group Housing; COMM (RZ): Commercial (Residential Zone) 46 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 47. Glowstar Marketing Gopal Global GPM Developers   GTV International  Hind Enterprises   Iris Plaza   Iris Plaza   Jai Shakti Builders Larsen & turbo  Mahindra Gesco Developers  MB Malls   Monnet Sugar Nehru Palace Hotels New Age Town Planners Omaxe Construction  Omaxe Construction  Omaxe Construction  Pioneer Town Planner Piyush Buildwell Piyush Coloniser Piyush Coloniser Printpak Machinery   Robust Buildwell Robust Buildwell (OMAXE) RPS Infrastructure  RPS Infrastructure  RPS Infrastructure  RPS International Shiv Sai Infrastructure Shiv Sai Infrastructure Shreeji Buildwell Smart Housing   SN Realtors   Snow Temp Engg Co  SPR Buildtech   Sri Sat Sahib Housing & Infrastructure Sri Sat Sahib Housing and Infrastructure SRS Real Estate  SRS Real Estate  SRS Real Estate  SRS Real Estate  SRS Real Estate  Standard Frams   Swatantra Land & Finance Swatantra Land & Finance Swatantra Land & Finance GH GH GH GH IT Park  GH GH GH IT Park  GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) Plotted GH GH GH Plot (IND)  GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH COMM (CZ) COMM (RZ) GH IT Park  Plotted GH GH GH COMM (RZ) GH GH IT Park  GH GH 1.5 1.87 4.03 5.25 8.97 5.96 5.36 10.1 9.26 4.94 3.69 1.37 2.609 50.09 32.87 16.25 4.25 50.13 17.41 1.35 1.58 2.08 2.0875 8.571 49.02 7.59 19.98 10.15 10.4 13.01 2.143 13.29 11.01 13.01 10.26 2.74 GH 11.39 GH GH GH GH GH GH GH GH GH 15.06 19.72 19.02 3.33 2.28 2.37 3.12 10.93 1.09 53.37 PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 47
  • 48. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Tarang Entertainment Pvt Ltd Triveni Infrastructure Development   TriveniFerrous Infrastructure   TriveniFerrous Infrastructure   Tulip Housing   Universal Buildwell   Usha Spinning & Weaving Mills  Vashistha Builders & Engineers Pvt Ltd Vipul  Zion Promoters and Developers   ZNR Builders 2.08 39.68 GH GH GH GH GH  Plot (IND) 48.04 11.71 1.23 10.93 4.79 52.92 COMM (RZ) 3.46 GH 4.24 GH 4.02 Total 2402 Acre Land Licenses in Hooda Regime since 2005 Licenses Area 594 Gurgaon 8066.53 acre  HS Realty  Magic Info Solutions    Shamrock Infrastructure  Shiva Profins Private Limited 1000 Trees Housing Pvt Ltd A & D Estate  A & D Estate   A & D Estate   A & D Estate   A & D Estate   A & D Estate   A & D Estate   Aakansha Infrastructure    Aakarshan Estate Pvt Ltd Aakarshan Estates Aakarshan Estates ABC  ABW Infrastructure  ABW Infrastructure  ABW Infrastructure  ABW Infrastructure  ABW Infrastructure  Active Promoters   Active Promoters   Active Promoters   Active Promoters   Aditya Buildwell   Adson Software Pvt Ltd Afresh Builders Aggarwal Developers Airmid Developers Ltd Airmid Developers Ltd 48 COMM (RZ) GH gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 GH GH COMM (RZ) GH RGH COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) GH COMM (CZ) GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH GH GH GH GH COMM (RZ) IT Park  GH COMM (RZ) IT Park  COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) Plotted RGH COMM (RZ) GH COMM GH 4.078 22.12 3.231 11.09 13.08 5.75 12.66 1 2.04 11.42 1.86 11.45 2.47 2.5 15.72 3.518 15.6 13.89 19.64 3 12.45 11.09 3.65 13.01 5.46 2.65 104.91 2.66 2.94 13.01 5.45 24.1 46.18 Acre 60.07 Acre www.gfilesindia.com
  • 49. Airmid Developers Ltd Ajay Aggarwal Enterprises  Ajay Aggarwal Enterprises  AJS Builders Alden Developers   ALM Infotech City ALM Infotech City    Ambience Projects and Infrastructure AMD Estates & Developers (P)   AN Buildwell   Anant Raj Industries Anant Raj Industries Ltd Anant Raj Industries Ltd Ananya Land Holdings   Anjuman & Estates    Ansal Buildwell  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties & Infrastructure  Ansal Properties and Infrastructure Anurag Sharma Anurag Sharma Aquarious Buildcon   Arrow Infraestate   Ashutosh Developers Asthetic Township Developers Athena Infrastructure   Athene Infrastructure Atlantic Realtors  Atlantic Realtors    Aurochem Buildprop   Automax   Automax   Bal Prada Info Services   Balvinder Uppal Barmalt India Base Exports Basic Developers Pvt Ltd COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH GH GH COMM (RZ) GH 1.08 2 2 11.01 11.93 13.01 3.31 14.819 COMM (RZ) GH Plotted COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) IT Park  COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) Plotted Plotted Plotted Plotted Plotted COMM (CZ) Plot (IND) Plot (IND)  Plotted 2.97 11.5 100.262 2.95 2.03 13.55 3.72 2.24 4.38 1 111.59 1.55 25.75 4.24 13.01 12.71 2.156 COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) IT Park  COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH GH COMM (RZ) IT Park  GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (CZ) GH GH IT Park 3.8125 3.8375 10.75 2.03 2.77 2.85 1 3.256 2.03 10.03 11 2.85 2.22 2.24 2.98 13.28 13.01 9.67 178.63 Acre PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 49
  • 50. PETITION is a public sector com-INTEREST IN PUBLIC MDC Limited N haryana real estate pany under the Ministry of Steel, Government of India. Primarily engaged in the business of exploring minerals and developing mines to produce raw materials for the industry, it is also expanding its activities towards steel making and other value added products. It has been conferred “Navratna” status by Government of India. Incorporated in 1958, NMDC has been actively contributing to development of the nation for five decades and grown from strength to strength on its journey to nation building. Contribution to Indian Economy NMDC has been consistently paying dividend since 1990-91. For the financial year ended 31 March 2013, the dividend paid to the Government of India is Rs.2,300 crore and the cumulative dividend paid to Govt. of India upto 2012-13 is Rs.8,616 crore approximately. In 2012-13 gross contribution to the national exchequer was about Rs.7,490 crore. NMDC has about 5700 employees. Single Largest producer of iron ore in India: From a single-productsingle-customer company, NMDC has grown to be a major Indian iron ore supplier in the national and important supplier of Iron ore in international markets. The company has planned to increase iron ore production to 40 million tonnes by 2014-15 by developing new mines at Bailadila-11/B in Chhattisgarh and Kumarswamy in Donimalai Complex, Karnataka on the one hand and on the other, by expanding the production capacity of existing mines. Only Mechanized Diamond mine in Asia: NMDC also operates the only mechanized diamond mine in Asia with a capacity to produce one lakh carats per annum from its Diamond Mine, Panna, Madhya Pradesh. Pioneer in Exploration: NMDC is doing exploration and prospecting works for high value minerals like diamond in Andhra Pradesh and gold in Tanzania. Scientific Mining: NMDC has been carrying out scientific mining of the mineral deposits. Quality control, mineral beneficiation, proper blending, etc, are done systematically and religiously to ensure optimum exploitation of precious mineral. NMDC’s mines stand testimony to scientific mining and conservation of the mineral. The scientific exploration conducted by NMDC resulted in proving additional mineable reserves from its existing mines. At Bailadila deposit-14, the oldest mine in the Bailadila range, NMDC was able to prove and establish an additional mineable reserve of 125 million tonnes. At Bailadila deposit-5, the additional mineable reserve was proved to be about 156 million tonnes. At Donimalai an additional mineable reserve of 47.48 million tonnes is proven. Exploration is in progress to prove additional resources. Expansion/Diversification: As part of the Greenfield expansion / diversification programme, NMDC is setting up an Integrated Steel Plant of 3 MTPA capacity at Nagarnar, Chhattisgarh. NMDC is also expanding its business through forward integration by setting up 2 MTPA Pellet Plant at Nagarnar in Chhattsigarh and 1.2 MTPA Pellet Plant at Donimalai, Karnataka. NMDC has signed MoU with RINL to develop Slurry Pipeline System from Nagarnar to Visakhapatnam and Pellet Plant at Visakhapatnam. Sponge Iron Unit, Paloncha for the year 2012-13 has produced about 36,000 tonnes and is being considered for its expansion. NMDC has planned to expand its business through horizontal integration as well in the fields of Coal, Rock Phosphate, Lime Stone, Gold and Diamond. NMDC Global - International Investment Division of NMDC: NMDC Global has successfully acquired a majority State in Legacy Iron Ore Limited - an ASX listed Company - NMDC has acquired three coal tenaments through Legacy in Australia. In addition, it is actively pursuing gfiles inside theassets in Russia, acquisition7, issue 11 | February 2014 USA, Indonesia and Zimbabwe. of mineral government vol. 50 In addition it is also pursuing the development of path breaking technology in coal sector. Human Resources: NMDC is known for its excellence of human assets. The company exhibits the best possible work culture, and its manpower productivity shows continuous growth. The per capita productivity in NMDC is now about 28.20 metric tonnes of output per manshift. NMDC endeavours to give individual attention for the improvement of skills and management of aspirations of its employees, on the one hand; and, on the other, for the integration of individual motivation with the goals of the organization, so that the achievements of the employees and the organization are at the highest possible level. More than 50% of its employees belong to the weaker sections of society, viz., Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Castes, speaks of NMDC’s consciousness of its social responisbility. The Company maintains modern townships with all necessary facilities for its around 5700 employees in Bailadila in Chhattisgarh, Donimalai in Karnataka, Panna in Madhya Pradesh and other units. Global Exploration Centre: NMDC has got a drilling division at Raipur for taking up exploratory drilling works at potential mineral deposits. This has been strengthened to take up strategic exploration in mineral rich states (mainly iron ore) at no cost to the State Govts. Besides, this would concentrate on establishing additional resources by undertaking exploration in and around existing deposits and areas within the lease area. R&D Centre: From a nucleus R&D cell set up in 1970, it has grown into a highly sophisticated R&D Centre. One of the best-equipped laboratories of its kind, the Centre at Hyderabad can take up any assignment in the field of ore beneficiation, mineral processing, agglomeration, bulk solids flowability and mineral waste utilisation. With its excellent research facilities, the Centre carries out technology development missions in fields like mineral processing, flow sheet development, mineralogical studies and product development. It has been recognized as a “Centre of Excellence” by UNIDO. A Pilot Plant facility for production of Carbon free Sponge Iron Powder has been created based on research work done on value addition of Blue Dust at R&D Centre. The process route consists of reduction of blue dust by hydrogen produced through electrolysis of water. The powder has major application for making powder metallurgy component, soft magnetic components, friction materials and food fortification. R&D Centre has taken an initiative to utilize high-grade blue dust to produce value added product i.e. Nano Structure Iron Powder (NSIP), which can fetch high value. Corporate Social Responsibility: NMDC started CSR activities much before the concept was formally introduced. It has now strengthened its CSR activities. The beneficiaries are mostly the tribals/backward sections in the proximity of the mines, which are in remote locations. The areas focussed are education, health, medicare, drinking water, infrastructure development and self employment. These services are provided in consultation with the local people and the local administration. The CSR initiatives are not limited to the Company’s operational areas alone, but extended to all corners of the country. Environment Management: NMDC pays utmost attention to the environment management. It has its own Environment Management Programme. Restoration and conservation of forest are its prime objective, and its self-commitment is that the mined out areas will have a better forest than it was when NMDC entered the area. The afforested areas in the mines stand testimony to this commitment. Accreditation: NMDC mines have the following accreditations: 1. ISO 9001-2008 - QMS Certification for all its iron ore mines and R&D Centre 2. ISO 14001-2004 - EMS Certification for all its production mines. 3. OHSAS 18001 - 2007 - OHMS Certification for all its production mines. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 51. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 51
  • 52. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India Bestech India  Bestech India  Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bestech India   Bhram Parkash  Candea Projects Candeo Projects Pvt Ltd Celestial Estate   Central Govt Emp. Welfare Housing Org Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintals India  Chintels India Citra Properties Clarion Properties Pvt Ltd Clarion Properties   Clarion Properties   Cogent Realtors Commander Realtors Commander Realtors Commander Realtors Pvt Ltd Commander Realtors Pvt Ltd Consolidate Realtors   Conway Developers   Cosmos Infra 52 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 GH COMM (CZ) GH COMM (RZ) COMM. (RZ) COMM. (RZ) COMM. (RZ) GH GH GH IT Park  COMM (CZ) IT Park  COMM (CZ) GH COMM (RZ) GH GH COMM (RZ) COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) GH COMM (CZ) COMM (CZ) COMM (RZ) GH 2.75 2.8375 10.1 0.075 3.99 2.18 2.46 13.62 13.01 11.79 5.83 12.34 6.31 8.3 27.27 7.81 10.04 3.24 2.85 2.786 4.61 39 5.568 6.77 3.41 14.47 GH GH GH GH Plotted GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH COMM (RZ) COMM. (RZ) IT Park  COMM (RZ) GH Plotted Plotted COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) GH GH GH 19.77 12.07 13.01 39.37 149.09 15.88 3.24 6.21 8.294 5.9 3.46 5.92 2.76 18.88125 80.447 140.356 3.86 2.2 13.34 13.74 14.84 154.20 Acre www.gfilesindia.com
  • 53. Countrywide Promoters Countrywide Promoters Countrywide Promoters Countrywide Promoters Countrywide Promoters  Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   Countrywide Promoters   CSN Estates CSN Estates (P) Ltd CSN Estates (P) Ltd Deepanshu Projects   Deputy Gothwal Construction    Desert Moon Realtech  Desert Moon Realtors Pvt Ltd Dhampur Alco Chem Dharampal & others Dial Soft Tech   DLF  DLF Homes Panchkula DLF Homes Panchkula   DLF Homes Panchkula   DLF Ltd DLF Ltd DLF New Gurgaon Home Developers DLF New Gurgaon Home Developers DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers  DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   GH GH GH GH GH COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (CZ) IT Park  Plotted Plotted Plotted GH GH Addl. GH Addl. GH GH GH GH GH COMM (RZ) GH GH GH Plotted GH GH COMM RGH GH 13.01 13.01 16.33 23.18 13.88 3.68 2.36 4 5.02 119.93 102.2 18.61 19.74 10.18 8.88 1.99 14.64 14 10.44 10.92 3.17 16.47 10.97 13.4 57.03 10.16 27.47 1.38 10.56 2.794 GH 10.059 Plotted 7.006 RGH     25.09 RGH 12.15 GH 10.8 GH 14.35 GH 10 COMM (RZ) 4 GH 12.06 354.95 4.40 % PPI contd. on next page www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 53
  • 54. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Developers   DLF New Gurgaon Homes Dev's Pvt Ltd DLF Retails Developers DLF Retails Developers DLF Retails Developers MVL Ltd 54 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 GH 0.47 GH 2.64 GH 11.1 GH 0.17 COMM (RZ) 3.46 GH 13.73 GH 18.31 GH 10.43 IT Park  6.78 IT Park  8.36 COMM (RZ) 3.23 Plotted 100.51 COMM (RZ) 3.66 GH 11.67 IT Park  6.83 COMM (RZ) 11.64 GH 29.66 Addl. Plotted 3.9 COMM (CZ) COMM (RZ) COMM (RZ) RGH 25.71 4 8.7 5.65 822.57 10.19 % www.gfilesindia.com
  • 55. Prayer Government of India, to come up with a complete report as to how far the NCRPB Act, and the policies formulated there under for the control of land-uses and development of infrastructure in the National Capital Region so as to avoid any haphazard development of that region and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto, has been complied with by the respective state governments, in the present case the Government of Haryana, being a member therein; Government of India, to inquire into and to come up with details of the environment clearances as sought and granted to those selected few even when blatant violation of environmental laws and ecological disturbances are rampant in area in question and to calculate the damage done to the ecology of the Haryana especially in some of its districts such as Gurgaon, Faridabad, etc. ment of Town & Country Planning and Urban Estate and the Department of Forest and other related departments to elicit the consistency of the policies followed as also to unearth the favours given to a select few at the cost of common farmers and state exchequer. Central Bureau of Investigation, Income Tax Department, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Enforcement Directorate, Economic Offences Wing and others to unearth the ill-gotten money earned by builder mafia of Haryana, select coterie of businessmen and politicians. of builders, who have monopolised the construction activity at the gross disadvantage to poor home buyers and farmers whose land was acquired at unreasonably low prices. Board to formulate a clear policy of land use keeping various factors in mind such as the equity in acquisition, impact on environment, interest of buyers and those of the farmers whose land is subjected to acquisition. www.indianbuzz.com the cases relating to the above with a clear timeline for investigation by the CBI and the conclusion of the trial by the said court so that it will work as a deterrent for such mass scale loot of natural resources of the State endangering the ecological balance and huge and perpetual loss to the exchequer. passed an order directing the Haryana Government not to issue any colony development licences, change of land use or acquire any lands until its sub-regional plan for the 11 districts falling in the National Capital Region (NCR) is approved by the NCR Planning Board. The order assumes significance because the two Master Plans for Gurgaon made by the Haryana government in quick succession had generated widespread concern among environmental experts, as they meant significant dilutions in the environmental safeguards provided for in the NCR Planning Board recommended plan. Hailing the court direction, environment analyst Chetan Agarwal said it could have some impact on the upcoming Master Plan of Mangar Bani and protect the ecosensitive zones in the area. Haryana falling under the NCR should have been approved by the NCRPB before the master plans for Gurgaon were approved. But it did not happen and a lot of eco-sensitive and water recharge zones were lost to haphazard development planned in the two master plans. The most glaring example being the Ghata Lake which had been natural water recharge zone, but the master plan allowed residential and commercial development there. Any such direction by court earlier could have prevented the messy development. But it is better late than never.” have any direct bearing on the development in the region, but is a moral victory for environmentalists. “We have always been maintaining that the sub-regional plan should have been approved before the Master Plans for Gurgaon were prepared. But it was overlooked by the board. The sub-regional plan for Gurgaon has been submitted to NCRPB just a month ago while the master plans were approved a long ago. Now there are attempts to even dilute the provisions in the NCR Regional Plan-2021 and mould them as per the subregional plan and master plans, though it should be other the way round.” g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 55
  • 56. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate In keeping with the ethics of journalism, gfiles sent a questionnaire to each of parties – Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Venod Sharma, Kunal Bhadoo, Kabul Chawla, Anil Bhalla, Arvind Walia and KP Singh. Nobody bothered to reply except for Kabul Chawla, BPTP Chairman & Managing Director. His lawyers replied to the questions and the same is reproduced here. When the questionnaire was brought to his attention, Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, it is learnt, he told TC Gupta, Secretary, Town and Country Planning (Haryana) that “it should be ignored... they are just trying to malign me.” 56 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 REPLY BY KABUL CHAWLA’S LAWYERS Vijay Kaundal Advocate & Solicitor, SRGR LAW OFFICES A T the outset, it is stated that the all the allegations raised are false, frivolous, baseless and factually incorrect and your letter is completely based on presumption and assumptions. We would like to put it on record that institutional investors like JP Morgan and Citigroup Property Investors have invested in the parent company level (BPTP Limited) after conducting thorough due diligence and our Client has also done joint ventures with well known groups like Blackstone, TMW and Kotak. Though our Client is not obligated to reply to the frivolous and baseless allegations levelled by you, our Client is still responding to your queries to dispel your doubts and misgivings. We object to such questionnaire/ scrutiny in the affairs of our Client by your organisation without any proof or evidence and it is apparent that it is being done with ulterior motives. gfiles: Even though your company was incorporated under the Companies Act on August 11, 2003, you were an unknown and insignificant player in the market till 2005. Your company and its business actually started after March 5, 2005, when Bhupinder Singh Hooda became CM and your luck started changing. Almost overnight in 2005, your www.gfilesindia.com
  • 57. backing and support are completely false, baseless, without any substance and are defamatory in nature, and hence are specifically denied. Please note that our Client is conducting its business in accordance with law. Company started aggressively buying prime land in and around Faridabad. And in just three years, it had acquired licenses to develop 283.88 acres land at unheard-of rock bottom prices of `210 per sq ft in Faridabad. The company starting selling the first of its plots in 2006 and by 2009 it had sold approximately 5,657 residential plots, 10,685 apartments, 463 commercial plots and other commercial space. Is such kind of growth possible by fair dealings and without political backing? BPTP: Except for whatever is a matter of record and which are in public domain rest of all your facts and figures are denied. Further, your allegations regarding any political gfiles: It is alleged that you operate a number of subsidiary and shell companies like Countrywide Promoters Pvt Ltd, Countrywide Home and Farms Pvt Ltd, Glitz Builders & Promoters Pvt Ltd, Foliage Construction Pvt Ltd, Five Star Promoters Pvt Ltd, Vital Construction Pvt Ltd, Native Buildcon Pvt Ltd, Green Valley Towers Pvt Ltd, Anupam Towers Pvt Ltd, Sunglow Overseas Pvt Ltd, Druzba Overseas Pvt Ltd, Business Park Promoters Pvt Ltd, Fragrance Construction Pvt Ltd, KA Promoters & Developers Pvt Ltd, Westland Developers Pvt Ltd, Poonam Promoters & Developers Pvt Ltd and Vasundra Promoters Pvt Ltd. The main role of these companies allegedly is financial manipulation, land ownership and alleged illegal transfer of land from one company to another without paying registry charges, thus bypassing the provisions of transfer of the Immovable Properties Act? BPTP: It is reiterated once again that, as per the information available in the public domain, it is evident that BPTP Group is composed of various group companies and in compliance with laws. This is to apprise you that all the entities in the said Group have been established for lawful purposes in accordance with the relevant laws. The group structure ensures synergy and realisation of ultimate vision and objectives of the management. BPTP Group has adopted and implemented the best practices in its accounting and financial reporting. The allegations are nothing but based on surmises and conjectures, and thus does not merit any consideration. gfiles: It is common knowledge that Bhupinder Singh Hooda is one of the most pro-builder and anti-farmer Chief Ministers Haryana has seen in the last couple of decades. But, allegedly the inside story is that Hooda is just a proxy rubber stamp and builders like you are directly or indirectly allegedly dictating land development policies in the State. It is alleged that you influenced the three quick changes in the Master Plans? BPTP: It has to be stated that allegations are baseless and are defamatory in nature. The allegations contained specifically in this query and generally in the letter, attribute your intention not only to harm the reputation of our Client but also to harm the reputation of the office of Hon’ble Chief Minister of Haryana. Moreover, since such grave allegations without any iota of proof have been maliciously levelled www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 57
  • 58. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate against our Client, our Client reserve our right to initiate appropriate civil and criminal proceedings against you under the relevant provisions of law. Hence, the allegations are specifically denied. gfiles: It is alleged that BPTP is the biggest beneficiary of the Haryana government’s licensing policies, including the Master Plan changes. After and before each Master Plan change, you went and purchased land in those very sectors that were going to be covered in the Master Plan. How do you explain this? BPTP: The allegations contained are false, baseless and are defamatory in nature, and hence are specifically denied. gfiles: Here is an example of how government policy is bent in favour of certain people. It is alleged that you and other prominent builders, like DLF, Unitech, Ansals, Vatika Ltd and Suncity Projects, were present in a meeting chaired by BS Hooda in May 2009. Since the Assembly elections were round the corner, the government wanted you and others to announce populist low cost housing schemes. In the bargain, Hooda announced a ‘one-time relaxation’ for all those builders who applied for group housing colony as part of their plotted colony, and were prepared to reserve 10 per cent area for low cost housing. This meant that those builders who agreed got to build four additional large flats per acre. This is an example of how the low cost housing policy has been manipulated by the politician-builder lobby. The builders have got lands allotted in the name of low cost and affordable housing, but till date not a single apartment is near completion? BPTP: It has to be stated that it is a matter of record that the BPTP Group has applied for licenses for low cost group housing schemes formulated by the government. Please note that such schemes have been framed in accordance with the State policies and such policies were formulated by the state government for the benefit of the poor people. Further, such schemes were available to one and all and it was not specifically designed for the benefit of our Client. It is wrong and baseless to suggest that housing policy has been manipulated by a politician builder lobby, and hence the allegations raised in your query are based on sheer surmises and conjectures and are hereby specifically denied. housing to independent floors. Your comment? BPTP: It is the prerogative of the State to frame the laws, rules and regulations. It is to bring to your notice that such policies framed by the Government of Haryana are for the benefit of the entire State and its people and are not framed to suit certain section of builders, as alleged in your query. Further, the same is substantiated by the fact that such policies are also available for individuals and same is the matter of record. Further, it is pertinent to bring to your knowledge that such policies are also framed by various other states, namely Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, etc. Hence, it is vehemently denied that Government of Haryana framed policies to suit our Client’s interest. Further, such allegation being defamatory in nature; our Client reserves its right to initiate appropriate civil and criminal proceedings against you under the relevant provisions of law. gfiles: Today, with close to 1,606 acres of land in Faridabad and Gurgaon—Countrywide Promoters or BPTP—is way ahead of even Ansal Properties & Infrastructure or DLF. It is said that BPTP virtually runs a parallel government, at least as far as Faridabad and Gurgaon are concerned. No government official dares to come in its way. Your comment? gfiles: Another example of how things have been manipulated to suit BPTP’s interest is the way the Hooda Government permitted registration of independent floors on residential plots in January 2009. BPTP allegedly took full advantage and re-aligned its business from plotted 58 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 59. BPTP: The allegations here are specifically denied as they are nothing but based on sheer surmises and conjectures, and are baseless and defamatory in nature. This is to bring to your notice that DLF/Ansal have a nationwide presence and have developed and marketed various projects nationwide and have much wider stake in real estate market in India compared to our Client. gfiles: Why is it that despite specific complaints of nonpayment of sale price to the owner of a 15-acre land in Sector 106 in Gurgaon, the Haryana TCP renewed the license? Wasn’t it a fact that your company didn’t have possession of land and hadn’t begun any construction activity? BPTP: It has to be stated that our Client seeks licenses, only after following due validation process and in accordance with applicable laws. Further BPTP Group is the absolute owner or has valid agreements of all the piece and parcels of land developed or proposed to be developed by BPTP Group and all prior owners of such land are paid the agreed consideration for the same and there is no dispute of any manner whatsoever with regard to the same and in many cases our Client has paid more than what was agreed for in the agreements. The allegations contained in your query are nothing but false, malafide and fabrications of true facts, and are specifically denied. gfiles: It is alleged that Hooda himself is a benami owner of your company, which is currently developing 24 group housing, IT and residential projects in Faridabad and Gurgaon. Is this the reason why the average cost of the company’s land reserve is as low as `188 per sq ft? It is alleged that this unfair advantage is the reason behind your phenomenal success in a relatively short time span, allowing you to sell properties at attractive prices? BPTP: The accusations here are extremely defamatory in nature and are specifically denied. Without prejudice to rights and remedies available with our Client to seek appropriate recourse against such bald frivolous allegations, please note that our Client conducts its normal course of business on an arm’s length basis and fair market terms. Further, being more specific, our Client pays the appropriate consideration to the land owner as mutually agreed and sometimes it pays even higher amount than the sum agreed in the agreement to sell between our Client and land owners. Further, such allegation being highly defamatory in nature; our Client reserves its right to initiate appropriate civil and criminal proceedings against you under the relevant provisions of law. gfiles: Why it is that low cost housing for the poor and downtrodden is just a money minting machine for the builders who, after getting cheap land, connive with the officials to ensure that these projects remain ornamental or showpieces on paper and are never allowed to go beyond the drawing board stage? BPTP: It is denied that our Client has indulged in connivance to thwart the development of affordable housing for the low income groups. It may please be noted that our Client is a responsible real estate group and is conscious of its commitment towards the development of affordable housing for the low income groups. The allegations raised in your Query 10 are without any basis, and hence are denied in its entirely. gfiles: It is alleged that your company has the image of a rogue builder with no sense of ethics and morality in business? Allegedly you have one of the largest numbers of customer complaints against you for violating official policies and backtracking on commitments. Your comment? BPTP: The allegations are baseless, false and concocted and specifically denied. Kindly note that our Client operates in a manner consistent with high ethical, moral, and legal standards. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 59
  • 60. PETITION IN PUBLIC INTEREST haryana real estate gfiles: Is it true that the Patiala House court issued a nonbailable warrant against you and the Delhi Police registered an FIR for criminal breach of trust, cheating, fraud and criminal misappropriation based on a complaint by Suresh Goel, a Kotla-based businessman? BPTP: Please note that the proceedings in the said proceedings has been quashed by the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi and presently no such case is pending against our Client or its directors and hence, does not merit any consideration. gfiles: A number of complaints and cases of cheating, misappropriation and fraud have been lodged against you with EOW and SFIO. Is such conduct to be expected from a prominent builder like you? BPTP: This is to apprise you that no criminal case where any charges have been framed by the court is pending against our Client and/or its promoters. The allegations contained in your query are nothing but based on surmises and conjectures, and thus does not merit any consideration. gfiles: It is alleged that your Company, after having duped money from thousands of people, is still scot free because of its powerful political connections in Haryana and Delhi? BPTP: The allegations are false, malafide and baseless, and are specifically denied. it bother you that you are playing with other people’s life savings? BPTP: It has to be stated that our Client endeavours to comply with all the applicable laws for the development and sale of its project, including the stipulations and conditions incorporated in the licenses for various projects. gfiles: It is alleged that your company creates an artificial and false hype in the market to lure unsuspecting customers to deposit crores of rupees—even when the number of flats booked is far above your capability to deliver. Your company then arbitrarily changes the booking and sends a demand notice asking the flat buyers to pay the difference for an alternate allotment or else assumes that they are not interested and proceeds to forfeit their booking amount? BPTP: The allegations are nothing but false, malafide and fabrications of true facts, and are specifically denied. gfiles: It is alleged that BPTP has deliberately kept the flatbuyer agreement and other document very complex—500 odd pages—and, as a result, neither the buyer nor the broker is aware of most of the unfavourable terms at the time of making the investment decision. Is it humanly possible to read the fine print and grasp the legal gfiles: It is alleged that BPTP has one of the worst trackrecord of forfeiting / usurping people’s money by cancelling their plot or flat booking on one pretext or another? BPTP: It has to be stated that allegations are nothing but baseless and frivolous and are specifically denied. Kindly note that cancellations, if only, are made in accordance with mutually agreed contractual terms and conditions, and such contractual obligations are accorded sanctity of law. Further, being more specific, such forfeitures are in accordance with law and various judicial pronouncements including that by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India. Further, its completely lawful to insert such forfeiture clauses in the relevant contracts. Moreover, just to apprise you of the propriety of forfeiture clauses, kindly note that even Noida Authority has forfeited an amount of `130 crore for not fulfilling certain contractual obligations of the contract executed between our Client and Noida Authority, which goes to show that the forfeiture provisions work both ways. gfiles: It is alleged that BPTP has been selling properties and plots even without license/ site approval from the town planning department or other land owning bodies? Does 60 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 61. implications in a short time? BPTP: The allegations are wrong, baseless and frivolous, and are denied. It is wrong to allege that Flat Buyer’s Agreement and other documents consist of 500 odd pages as it is nothing but fabrication of true facts. It may please be noted that all the documents, including the Flat Buyer’s Agreement are readily available to the customers for inspection, and verification of the project details, broad terms and conditions, etc.; hence there is ample time for them to make a reasoned decision. gfiles: Why do you make the customers sign an affidavit indemnifying BPTP of any deficiency in services before signing the buyer seller agreement? What purpose does this affidavit serve when it is an unfair contract, hence illegal? BPTP: It is denied that such affidavit and undertakings are illegal on premise of unfair contract and these documents are necessary to ensure that customer’s enjoyment of the property is in accordance with all applicable laws. We would like to bring on record that even our client also submits similar undertakings at times to HUDA/DTCP and other government departments to avail licenses and other approvals. gfiles: When BPTP often penalises buyers who do not pay money on time, what is the corresponding penalty/ compensation payable in case BPTP fails to deliver on time? Why should BPTP also not be accountable for deficiency of services? BPTP: This is to apprise you that our Client is a responsible real estate group and always strive to abide its commitments. However, it is wrong to allege that our Client is not accountable towards its commitments. There are standard terms and conditions incorporated in the Flat Buyers’ Agreement/Booking Forms wherein, for reasons not attributable to our Client, delay penalty is payable to the customers. gfiles: It is alleged that your company has not been depositing EDC/IDC amounts collected from buyers to HUDA/DTCP? BPTP: The allegations are false and frivolous, and are specifically denied. This is to apprise you that our Client has so far deposited more than Rs 1,000 crore with the concerned authorities towards the EDC/IDC demands. gfiles: It is alleged that Income Tax officials conducted a search-and-seize operation at 23 premises of BPTP for alleged tax evasion and under-reporting of apartment sales. Your comment? BPTP: It is false, baseless and wrong to allege that any such IT raid was conducted at our Client’s premises for tax evasion and under reporting of apartment sales, and hence is specifically denied. This is to apprise you that IT Department carries such routine activities and no adverse order has been passed against our Client. The allegations raised are without any basis, and hence are denied in its entirety. gfiles: Why did your company outbid DLF, Ansals and Omaxe for a 95-acre commercial-cum-residential plot in Noida for `5,006 crore—the costliest land deal in Indian history—when it really did not intend to keep it and eventually surrendered almost 74 acres back to the Noida Development Authority and retained just 21 acres for launching a commercial project? BPTP: It may please be noted that the bid for the commercialcum-residential plot in Noida was a genuine transaction, being based on the prevalent market conditions and commercial viability. The facts relating to this transaction is a matter of record and the same is in public domain. However, it is wrong to attribute ill intentions on the part of our Client and hence, you are urged to desist from conjuring up such false and baseless conclusions. g www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 61
  • 62. POLITICS bjp rss Second citizens of BJP The BJP and the RSS are two faces of the same coin. Officially, the RSS claims it is nothing to do with the BJP, but it is obvious that it is difficult to survive politically within the BJP if one has not completely surrendered to the RSS. Non-RSS politicians in the BJP are seldom consulted on core issues of polity. There is a zero tolerance atmosphere against the RSS within the BJP. With such a narrow approach, how long will non-RSS politicians continue to accept the BJP as a political identity without any say in decision-making? by NARENDRA KAUSHIK J ITENDRA Gaur has discontent written all over his face. Despite having put in blood and sweat for 23 years into the Delhi BJP and knowing almost every resident of his municipality ward Malviya Nagar, he has not quite made it. Gaur (43) is merely a Convener 62 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 of Urban Villages when many of his contemporaries have risen to be councilors, legislators and top office bearers in the Delhi BJP. He blames the stagnation in his political career on not being a Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) man. Gaur, a college dropout, has been twice unlucky in getting the nomination for Malviya Nagar Ward (number 161). “I was shortlisted for the Councillor’s ticket in 2007 and 2012. Since I knew every party worker in Malviya Nagar and four villages—Adhchini, Begumpur, Jia Sarai and Kalu Sarai—I was the most eligible candidate among the aspirants. But my non-RSS background became a hurdle. Party mein RSS ka chalan hai (RSS holds sway in the party). I was told, ‘you are not a RSS www.gfilesindia.com
  • 63. Ruling with an iron hand: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat during the Sang Sangam at Parade Ground, Jammu worker’ and denied nomination,” he claims. BJP Councillor in 2007 Inderjit Verma, according to him, was groomed in the RSS. Gaur’s wife Yogita feels he has wasted over two decades in the party and he quite agrees with her. The hibernation has frustrated his family. Gaur’s father, Om Prakash, who was an office bearer in IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) Employees Union and, more importantly, part of the Sangh Parivar, passed away in 2002. He wishes the latter was alive and could push his case better with the party bosses, many of whom, including Harshvardhan and Jagdish Mukhi, have emerged out of the Sangh bodies—shakhas, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Sewa PHOTOS: UNI Bharati, Vidya Bharati, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Bajrang Dal, Bharatiya Majdoor Sangh, Pradhyapak Milan, Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram, etc. Gaur’s contemporary and competitor, current Malviya Nagar Councillor Satish Upadhyay, is tipped to head South Delhi Municipal Corporation. But Gaur looks resigned to working in the lower rungs of the party for the rest of his life. “RSS is a major factor for promotion in the BJP. It plays a huge role. I have no hope left,” he signs off. Sangh skills add value AUR is not alone who has had a stunted growth due to the RSS factor. Even the new aspirants are aware of the Sangh’s overarching influence on the BJP. BJP ticket hopeful from Gurgaon Assembly Constituency and former Sarpanch of Chakkarpur Village, Anil Yadav, refers to this when he says it is definitely a G Yashwant Sinha (far left) and Jaswant Singh (left) are two prominent non-RSS men in the BJP. Both of them are seen with suspicion by the RSS, which considers them anti-Swadeshi www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 63
  • 64. POLITICS bjp rss plus to have the RSS pedigree in the BJP. Yadav, whose wife Sunita is a Councillor in Gurgaon Municipal Corporation, terms RSS background as an extra qualification. “It’s better if you are from the RSS. EK degree (RSS grooming) faltu ho to better rehta hai (it’s better to have an extra degree). You get ideologically trained and are better equipped to understand the BJP brand of politics,” Yadav claims. Yadav cites the example of the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitely, to buttress his argument. Jaitely, a former ABVP office bearer, according to him, may not be a mass leader but is well versed about the Sangh’s views on national issues. Interestingly, the 64 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 entire BJP Parliamentary Board (barring Sushma Swaraj), cut teeth in the Sangh Parivar. Similarly, a majority of the BJP’s 77-member National Executive joined the party via the RSS route. The rest belongs either to the glamour world (Hema Malini, Shatrughan Sinha, Vinod Khanna, Kiron Kher), sports (Navjot Singh Sidhu, Chetan Chauhan) or are symbolic representatives of minorities (Najma Heptullah, Syed Shahnawaz Hussain and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi). Besides Atal Behari Vajpayee, Lal Krishan Advani, Murali Manohar Joshi, Venkiah Naidu, Arun Jaitely, Nitin Gadkari, Gopinath Munde, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Kalraj Mishra, Vinay Katiyar, Vinay Sahastrabuddhe and Yogi Adityanath, the known RSS names, the executive gives space to Seshadri Chari and Tarun Vijay, former editors of Organizer and Panchjanya, respectively, mouthpieces of the RSS. Manisha Priyam, a political economist, concedes there is pre-eminence and control of the RSS over the BJP and this needs to change. Priyam advises the saffron party to involve more people from other walks of life. RSS for pushing ‘PM’ Modi INCE the RSS was in the forefront of pushing for Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s projection for Prime Ministership, BJP members with RSS lineage are S www.gfilesindia.com
  • 65. Shahnawaz Hussain (centre, above) and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi (left) are the symbolic representatives of minorities in the BJP's National Executive working extra hard for the saffron party’s mission 272+. They definitely feel they have a larger stake in putting Modi in the PM’s chair. Bharat Soni, head of Election Data Cell in Gujarat, and his 80-plus member team are compiling booth-level election data of the entire country. Soni, a former RSS hand, aims to store the data in software christened ATIT. “We already have data of Gujarat since 1968, data of Gujarat State Municipalities from 2002 to 2012 and data of four states—Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh—which went to polls recently. We’ve appointed one pointsman for every 50 voters. He will work on them,” Soni reveals. He admits it is easier for RSS-trained volunteers to adapt in the BJP. Rakesh Goel, President of the Punjab IT Cell, who has designed a www.indianbuzz.com mobile app winbjp.in/m from where one can download Modi’s speeches, profile and pictures, etc, agrees with Soni. Goel, an RSS volunteer, is registering students from schools and colleges for mission 272+. According to Goel, almost all the dozen MLAs of the BJP and majority of party’s office bearers in Punjab, including State BJP President Kamal Sharma, are steeped in the RSS culture. Goel is greatly enthused by Facebook and Youtube pages, like Namo Bharat and Namo Modi, on BJP’s PM nominee. The RSS workers in the BJP are also working overtime to build a secular image for Modi. Jaidev Rajwal, There are umpteen examples of the Sangh Parivaar dictating a policy or choice to the party and also ensuring that forces resisting it towed its line Convener of BJP’s IT Cell in Jammu & Kashmir, claims to have recruited 30 per cent Muslims in his team. Rajwal, who has been associated with the RSS since childhood, is sure that the BJP would win half of the six parliamentary seats from the border State. Sangh calls the shots ORE than the numbers what is important is that the Sangh holds complete sway over the BJP and its claim that it is only a moral guardian of the saffron outfit, is patently false. There are umpteen examples of the Parivaar dictating a policy or choice to the party and also ensuring that forces resisting it towed its line. The Sangh hand was more than evident when Advani was brought around to agree to Narendra Modi’s projection for Prime Ministership. The RSS Pramukh (head) Mohan Bhagwat called up Advani in June last year before the latter came around on Modi’s name. On October 23, 2013, when the M gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 65
  • 66. POLITICS bjp rss BJP declared Harshvardhan, a former RSS man, as Chief Ministerial candidate of the party for Delhi, it carried the unmistakable stamp of Sangh headquarters. In fact, it would not be an exaggeration to say that the party’s Delhi incharge Nitin Gadkari, Rajnath Singh and others simply did the bidding of the RSS’ Delhi State propagandist (Prant Pracharak) Anil Kant, Delhi RSS Chief Kulbhushan Ahuja when they made the announcement. Apart from Kant and Ahuja, Mukesh Punyani, the unofficial link between the RSS and the Delhi BJP, pushed for Harshvardhan. The trio was reportedly cut up with the Delhi BJP Chief Vijay Goel, who had stopped consulting them on political matters. Earlier this month, the RSS warned the BJP against taking the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) lightly. BJP Chief Rajnath Singh, his predecessor Nitin 66 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Smriti Irani (above) and Shatrughan Sinha (right) represent the glamour world in the BJP Gadkari and BJP General Secretary in charge of Organisation, Ram Lal, reportedly participated in a two-day RSS conclave in Hyderabad. They were told to learn from AAP’s strategy and be more participatory. The war within T was dual membership issue which gave birth to the BJP in 1980, with the party declaring its commitment to ‘Gandhian Socialism’, much to the chagrin of the heads of the Parivar. The membership issue led to the withdrawal of support by Bharatiya Jan Sangh from Morarji Desai Government in the same year. Since then, a constant tug-of-war has been on between the parent and the child, with the latter time and again I www.gfilesindia.com
  • 67. resisting and trying to get out of the stranglehold barring occasions when there has been convergence of views between the two. The convergence was manifested in Ram Janmabhoomi movement in 1990s and now in the projection of Narendra Modi for the top executive post of the country. During the rule of the first BJPled coalition, Vajpayee and Advani thwarted the Sangh hegemony and succeeded to an extent. The government and the Sangh had major differences of opinion over economic policies. Swadeshi Jagran Manch, an arm of the RSS, constantly agitated against the government’s liberalisation policy. Vajpayee retained and promoted Jaswant Singh, whom the Sangh considered anti-Swadeshi. When the Parivar honchos did not allow Singh’s inclusion in the Union Cabinet because the latter had lost an election, Vajpayee made him the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission. www.indianbuzz.com Singh has been RSS’ whipping boy ever since. In August 2009, he termed Mohammad Ali Jinnah ‘secular’ and was subsequently expelled from the BJP. Currently, he is a member of the BJP National Executive but maintains a low profile. The same goes for Yashwant Sinha, another prominent non-RSS man. Sinha quit the BJP in June 2009. Last year, he openly demanded resignation of Gadkari, RSS’ man-Friday, after the latter’s name figured in a controversy. Heads I win, tails you lose S demonstrated by the projection of Narendra Modi despite Advani’s objections, declaration of Harshvardhan as Chief Ministerial candidate in Delhi, continuance of Nitin Gadkari in the highest decision-making bodies of the BJP and waning role of Jaswant Singh and Yashwant Sinha, the RSS holds the party in tight leash. There is complete surrender and not even pretence of protest against the ownership. The Sangh holds all the aces for the time being. In case Modi becomes the Prime Minister, it would hope to add some lustre to its shakhas, where the numbers are either on perpetual decline or have stagnated. It would hope to add to relevance of its ideology in modern India. “There are only three ideologies in India – Communism, Congress and the RSS,” Ashok Khandelkar, a full-time Pracharak and former President of District Panchayat in Jalgaon (Maharashtra), declares. If Modi fails to make the cut, the failure will solely be his and the BJP’s. The Sangh can wash its hands off and repeat what Khandelkar adds as a rider, “The RSS is like Rajguru. It is a factory to make good human beings. It has nothing to do with power politics”. g A gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 67
  • 68. GOVERNANCE politics mg devasahayam Rahul Gandhi Narendra Modi Nitish Kumar Race for 7 Race Course Road With Manmohan Singh opting out of the race, the field is open for other aspirants, whether anointed by birth, or nominated by the party, or regional supremos S HAKESPEARE’S Macbeth has a poignant quote: “Nothing in his life/Became him like the leaving it”. This refers to the execution of Thane of Cawdor for treason, meaning that he died with more dignity than he lived. This quote is used on occasions to describe the departure of people with dismal track records. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had such a chance during his valedictory press conference, but he lost it due to his proverbial cowardice. Even then, he has run out his race! India’s Prime Minister is an elected ‘appointee’ of the ‘high command’. 68 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Hopefully, this time, a truly elected and functional person will occupy the chair. While so, let us do an appraisal of the one who has ‘retired’ from the race, before looking at those at the starting block! Jag Suraiya, the noted columnist, has made the task easy with this humorous narrative. Some years ago an American entrepreneur invented the perfect pet for people who were too busy to keep regular pets who need a lot of exercise and caring: he invented the pet-rock. Unlike other pets, this pet-rock did not need to be taken for walks, or be given food, or taken to the vet. The pet-rock just sat there, totally immobile and completely silent. genius for jugaad, India invented a Prime Minister in Manmohan Singh (MMS) who, like the American entrepreneur’s pet-rock, just sat there and did nothing right for ten long years. But, unobtrusively, he has done immense harm to India’s governance, economy, socio-economic fabric, ecology, security and human rights. His economic policies were centered on the MNC-diktat to “create a market of 30 crore middle and high-income Indians” and throw crumbs at the other 90 crore! While bringing about temporary GDP growth, these policies have led to rabid resource loot, sickening corruption, unemployment, www.gfilesindia.com
  • 69. and infrastructure projects. He went to the extreme extent of appointing a ‘compliant’ Environment Minister at the fag-end of his tenure, who, within days, abandoned the WesternGhats ecology protection scheme and cleared 70 projects that include agriculture-killing Gorakhpur Nuclear Plant (GNPP) in Haryana and forest-denuding POSCO steel/mining project in Odisha. MMS promptly went and laid the foundation stone of GNPP! T Murli Manohar Joshi inequity, poverty, price rise and avalanche of black-money. Hunger is pervading one-quarter of India. According to the latest Global Hunger Index, India ranks 65 out of 79 nations and, what’s worse, it has remained on the same position for the last ten years. The index has been worked out by the International Food Policy Research Institute as a composite of three equally weighed indices: under-nourishment, child mortality rate and proportion of underweight children. According to the Report, as against China’s 5.2 per cent and war-torn Rwanda’s 19.7 per cent, almost 23 per cent of Indians are battling hunger and need immediate support. Anything above 10 per cent on the scale is considered serious. This is the kind of super-pauper State this Jaswant Singh pet-rock has built through ilt his extractive policies! icies! The ecology too has been o devastated. MMS kept the S environment ministry structurnistry ally weak so that whent between destrucuctive ‘development’ nt’ and ecology, the he former is given n precedence at the e cost of the latter. . Being insensitive to the fragile and collapsing ng ecosystem, he has been bullying the Minhe istry of Environment to ment give clearance for ecologically disastrous industrial ndustrial Manmohan Singh has done immense harm to India’s governance, economy, socio-economic fabric, ecology, security and human rights. His economic policies were centered on the MNCdiktat to “create a market of 30 crore middle and high-income Indians”! www.indianbuzz.com RANS-BOUNDARY movement of polluting technologies and hazardous wastes has been ram- decision in 2004 to mindlessly promote Special Economic Spec Zones with 100 per cent FDI in real estate business e has reduced urbanisation to u mere property development. It has also terribly skewed t the ma market for urban land, making it far beyo beyond the reach of ordinary people. o He now plans to agriculture by ag allowing 100 per a cent FDI in farm ce land! la In his ‘farewell’ I press conference, MMS was fervently hoping that historians g would give him a better treatment than what treatme was being meted out to bei him in the media, and by th Opposition. the He mus be aware of must Sho what Shoma Chaudhury of Tehelka wrote: Teh “History will judge him (Dr Singh) harshly for Sing gfi gfi gfiles gfiles inside the government f vol vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 ol l. Feb 69
  • 70. GOVERNANCE politics mg devasahayam betraying faith; for failing the chance it gave him. It is not everybody who gets two shots at being the Prime Minister of the most populous democracy in the world. To get to be so as its unelected head is even rarer. Unfortunately for Manmohan Singh, so stark and unexpected have the betrayals been, history has begun to train its lens on him even before his term is done.” Afflicted with a sense of guilt, MMS kept insisting that he was the same person that he was ten years ago and that he had served with utmost ‘dedication and integrity’. True, but his ‘dedication’ was not to the Indian people, but to the agenda of his US/ World Bank masters. He imported Montek Ahluwalia from Washington DC and packed PMO with inbreeds to zealously pursue this agenda. They have made India a client-state of the USA. For this, MMS went to the extreme extent of buying MPs to support the Indo-US Nuclear Deal and then purred to President Bush that the whole of India loved him. Now, he has openly acknowledged this dubious deal as his best work as PM. As it turns out, nuclear deal was a decoy for defence rip-off. Although it remains a dud deal on energy, with little prospect of delivering a single operational nuclear power plant for years to come, it has become a open sesame to major US arms sales. When MMS visited White House in September 2012, among the gifts he presented to President Obama, was a commitment to purchase $5 billion worth of arms. At the height of L’affaire Khobragade, while a deceptive drama was being enacted to deceive the public, a mega defence contract—a $1.01-billion deal for supply of six additional C-130J military transport aircraft—was awarded to the USA. The government-to-govern- 70 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 UNI ment weapon contracts between the US and India, with no competitive bidding or transparency, heavily burdens Indian taxpayers, forcing them to subsidise American military-industrial complexes. These transactions are the largest source of kickbacks for India’s corrupt carpetbaggers. Indeed, MMS has served his masters with ‘integrity’! T HE pet-rock has severely eroded several institutions of governance—Parliament, JPC, ministries, CAG, Election Commission, CVC, NHRC, UPSC, civil services and army—in his bid to propitiate the dynasty and powerful vested interests! Judiciary and Attorney General were also not spared. The latter has able orders. PMO, once respected, has been reduced to a hub for scheming, scandals and skullduggery, morphing a functional democracy into dysfunctional kleptocracy. This is the legacy of MMS. walia, blood-brother of Montek Ahluwalia, must have had a ring-side view of the shenanigans of the Manmohan-Montek duo. So he directs his anguish at MMS thus: “Please shed your intellectual robes and become the babu you really have been, betraying yourself time and again, turning a Nelson’s eye to massive corruption and allowing decision-making to be subverted by unconscionably partisan politics and sloth…People voted for you in 2009 based on your record that more and better things were to come….But, instead, like the collapse of the mountains above Kedarnath, and public expectations cracked and collapsed under the weight of timidity, poor political instincts but, most importantly, betrayal.” I thought ‘betrayal’ is a harsh word meeting in 1975 over dinner at Chandigarh, where I was the District Commissioner. It was at the time of Emergency and Jayaprakash Narayan, who was my prisoner for six months, had just been released on health grounds. News of my managing JP’s release and rushing him to Jaslok Hospital, Bombay, to save him from kidney failure, had leaked out and was the subject of hushed discussion. After dinner MMS travelled with me to his apartment. As he neared his place, he took both my hands and in an emotional tone said: “Devasahayam, by saving the life of JP, you have given hope for India’s second freedom. Nation and its people are ever beholden to you.” His prediction materialised in when JP’s protégé Chandrasekhar became Prime Minister. Taking him to be a sincere soul and sound economist, I was among the www.gfilesindia.com
  • 71. Narendra Modi (left) and Arvind Kejriwal (far left) are the new forces on the national political scene event of the ‘AAPstacle’ containing BJP below 180 seats, the standby PM candidates are Murali Manohar Joshi or Jaswant Singh. in the late nineties. We used to meet periodically and I went on to play a facilitating role during the 2004 Lok Sabha elections in Tamil Nadu. Then, having a good equation with MMS and Karunanidhi, I had brought them together to initiate a Congress-DMK alliance that won all the 40 seats, propelling the former into the PM’s chair. But, once he became PM, he did not know who I was! Probably, in his avatar as ‘loyal’ Congressman, he wanted to be miles away from my JP-tag! Be that as it may, Prime Minister is the leader of the country—a person who should have the positive attributes of decisiveness, determination, persistence, reformer, communicator and friend of those who suffer and struggle. That era is long over and what we have today are mere politicians masquerading as leaders. It is only among them we can look for replacement of the ‘pet-rock’. In the Congress-led UPA, MMS has thrown in the towel. Finance Minister Chidambaram, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, Defence Minister AK Antony and Lok Sabha Speaker the Congress screen, but ended up as mere ‘mention in dispatches’! So, despite his ‘failing halo’, it is Rahul Gandhi backed by big sister Priyanka. Except for his birth for staking claim, tion—politically or administratively— to be the PM candidate. With strong anti-incumbency factors, lost repu- www.indianbuzz.com tation on account of scams and corruption charges, humongous price rise and a deteriorating economic situation, Congress could face rout in parliamentary elections. Rahulcome-lately dramatics and contrived angry-young-man posers against inFact is that there is no ‘leadership’ in the servile Congress party. Hence, the well-orchestrated blitzkrieg of AAP and Arvind Kejriwal, aided by the command performance of corporatecontrolled media. This appears to be another of the time-tested manipulations of the US-centered MNCs operating through their political/business minions in India. For ten years they used the contrived ‘Mr Clean’ image of an individual (MMS) and now they are probably opting for the media-managed ‘anti(AAP) to retain their grip! BJP-led NDA has put all its eggs in Narendra Modi’s basket. Despite several negative factors—the baggage of Godhra, accusation of encounter killings, reputation of being an authoritarian and non-compromising leader, non-secular and anti-minority credentials—he has a fair chance to occupy the PM’s chair. The argument is that India-at-large wants a dynamic the Republic from the abysmal depths of misgovernance and political corruption, and NaMo appears to be the man of the moment. But in the I N the ‘non-Congress-non-BJP Front’, Nitish Kumar emerges as the most prominent PM candidate. But he knows his limitations and Other candidates are the three Ms— Mayavati, Mamata and Mulayam— all home-grown leaders popular in their own party. But outside, none of them could emerge as a consensus candidate. Sharad Pawar and Naveen Patnaik are also leaders who have PM aspirations. They may not face as much opposition as the three Ms, numbers to back their ambitions. Pawar also says he will not contest elections, and would support someone else for PM. That someone could be the ‘sariclad’ Selvi Jayalalithaa of Tamil Nadu. is sparing no efforts to win all 40 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu and Pondichery so that Amma could reach the pinnacle. If this materialises, people of the country may have a taste of Tamil Nadu’s ‘welfare’ model with half its population tippling on Statealcohol and the other half living on government-freebies. Bravo! Any PM in UPA-III would mean more of the cloistered ‘Delhi Durbar’. NaMo of NDA-II could be some ‘Westerly Wind’ and any other would be ‘Whirlwind’! ‘Tout le meilleure’. Let the best win! g The writer is a former Army and IAS officer. Email: deva1940@gmail.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 71
  • 72. GOVERNANCE welfare devender singh Demographic bulge ahead! It is a matter of deep worry that there are no holistic programmes to address the variegated needs of older people and the aged, the fastest growing group in our population I NDIA has traditionally enjoyed a robust joint family system taking care of elderly persons. However, the sweeping currents of globalisation and transcending cultures are having their baleful effect on society. With the disintegration of the joint family system, emergence of nuclear families and single parent syndrome, elders are getting increasingly neglected, uncared for and, in many cases, maltreated. A recent empirical study by Prof. struck me was the immense number of elderly people, and their miserable plight....They live quiet and unobtrusive, some passing time on a broken charpoy, others collecting twigs, limping from one place to another, or simply lying ill in the darkness of a shabby back room. They rarely complain, at least, not in public, but if you enquire about their well being, the tales of sorrow are endless.’ Nothing could be more graphic. The situation will exacerbate with the transition of our youthful demographic curve, what Nandan Nilekani calls India’s demographic dividend, into a gerontological bulge by 2020. The population of senior citizens as a percentage of total population, which stood at 7.5 per cent as per the 2001 census, is likely to increase to 12.4 per cent in 2026 as per the report of the Technical Group constituted by the National Commission on Population. According to UN projections, the overall population in India by the year 2050 will grow by 55 per cent but that of the 60+ people will increase by 326 per cent. More alarmingly, there would be a 700 per cent increase in the 80+age group! It is a matter of deep worry that there are no holistic programmes to address the variegated needs of older people, the fastest growing group. The problem is especially pathetic in the unorganised sector. A manual worker, a rickshaw puller, a marginal farmer all become so decrepit and emaciated before attaining the sobriquet of senior citizen. They wither before they bloom. It appears that Medical services for senior citizens are in short supply 72 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 73. our subsidy regime and direct cash transfer schemes are more likely to create indolence, lethargy and paid unemployment rather than inducing the young and able bodied people to work hard and earn their legitimate assistance should be given, more appropriately, to needy senior citizens in a graded scale as they advance in age, fend for themselves by their callous progeny and kith and kin. Paradoxically, the National Policy for Senior Citizens recognises productive ageing as the key to the welfare of senior citizens between the age of 60-70 years. With increased life expectancy and relatively better state of health of a considerable section of the people, there are suggestions in bureaucratic echelons to have continuity of employment up to 62 years and also greater post retirement opportunities. But any such move should www.indianbuzz.com According to UN projections, the overall population in India by the year 2050 will grow by 55 per cent but that of the 60+ people will increase by 326 per cent. More alarmingly, there would be a 700 per cent increase in the 80+ age group not contribute to unemployment of the young. Attention needs to be accorded to the plight of the poor and underprivileged who are able to cross the threshold of 60 years. Those in the 80+ age group are highly vulnerable to a whole array of Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression, and so on, and they need special care. There is a national policy but for want of standing machinery for procuring coordination, the different ministries work in silos. In order to address upfront, citizens of 80+ years, elderly women, rural poor and the people working in unorganised sector and the specialised healthcare needs of elders, the national policy needs a comprehensive revisit. T HE National Council for Senior Citizens, an apex body, is dysfunctional as it has not met even once, though it is required to meet twice a year. The position of State Level Councils for senior citizens is no better. There is no Directorate of Senior Citizens for over-arching policy formulation and to oversee implementation of welfare measures. The programmes of old age homes, day care centres and Mobile Medicare Units have grievously suffered due to paltry allocation. There are about 296 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 73
  • 74. GOVERNANCE welfare devender singh old age homes in the country and that too concentrated in a few States. No norms have been prescribed for the manpower and the expertise needed for running old age homes or for construction of old age homes. Panchayati Raj institutions and local bodies seem to be disinclined to run old age Mobile Medicare Units (MMUs) can play an effective role in providing the much needed health care to the has gone down from 38 units in 201112 to 29 units in 2012. Geriatric daily clinics have been established in 65 district hospitals and geriatric wards established in 53 district hospitals. However, all 640 districts must be equipped with such facilities. Superspeciality hospitals also need to be set up exclusively for geriatric care in different regions. There is also an imperative need for setting up a National Institute of Ageing. A health insurance scheme, on the lines of the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana , needs to cover senior citizens without any regular source of sustenance. The income tax exemption for senior citizens should be indexed to the cost of living and healthcare. The aged destitute should be given decent monthly pension and free medical care. The protection of the life and property of the elders is yet another emerging challenge since crimes against them have become rampant, especially in urban areas. The reminiscence of a retired High Court judge, who sought judicial intervention to secure possession of the house built by him from his own son, refuses to fade. There are chilling tales of old age people abandoned by their well placed children! One needs to visit an 74 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Doles, subsidies and financial assistance should be given, more appropriately, to needy senior citizens in a graded scale as they advance in age, get secluded and infirm and are left to fend for themselves by their callous progeny and kith and kin old age home or a religious sanctuary like Vrindavan to gauge the extent to which our social fabric has ruptured The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 needs to be enforced stringently, a job to be done by the States. We also need to draw upon the welfare regime of many of the European countries, especially the Scandinavian countries, which provide facilities like home, healthcare and cooked meals to their senior citizens. Welfare programmes can be so integrated that elders in old age homes/service apartments are able to interact and educate children in orphanages or schools with some unobtrusive vigil. Apart from programmatic interventions, the rich cultural heritage of India needs to be widely disseminated. Elders have been held in high esteem from time immemorial. The bard of Mahabharata (in the Shanti Parva) could not conceive of an Assembly without the participation of the elders. The Scriptures refer to the four-fold benefits that accrue from the service of the aged. The aged must get proper access to food, shelter, the much needed healthcare, dignity and safety in the twilight of their life since the right to live with dignity is part of the fundamental right of life. The poet’s promise to ‘grow old along with me’ as the ‘best is yet to be’ would surely get fructified if the UN Convention on Ageing is implemented with full fidelity. g The author is a senior parliamentary official and a student of constitutional and parliamentary studies. The views expressed here are personal. He can be reached at dsaswal57@gmail.com www.gfilesindia.com
  • 75. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 75
  • 76. GLOBAL SCAN japan-india jeff kingston ‘Abeplomacy’ offsetting Japan’s isolation in Asia A lot is riding on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push to export nuclear technology abroad. As Abe visits New Delhi on the occasion of India’s Republic Day, we examine the nuclear component of ‘Abenomics’ infrastructure-exports growth strategy P RIME Minister Shinzo Abe was in New Delhi recently to celebrate the 65th anniversary of the founding of the Indian Republic. His presence speaks volumes about closer diplomatic, security and economic ties and, at least from Tokyo’s perspective, a common agenda on responding to the rise of China. India remains ambivalent, pursuing a shrewd hedging strategy rather than siding with either Beijing or Washington/ Tokyo, eager to maximise concessions from all sides. “The Emperor visited India last month — a huge symbolic event — and now Abe has been invited to be the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations on Jan. 26 — no other Japanese prime minister has been invited to this before — an invitation extended only to close friends and partners,” says Punendra Jain, professor of Asian Studies at Adelaide University in Australia. “This symbolises their closer and evolving political and strategic relationships. Of course, the elephant in the room is China.” Tensions with China and South Korea have spiralled upward over the past year and thus “Abeplomacy” 76 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 seeks to offset Japan’s isolation in East Asia by nurturing closer ties with the member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and India. Warming ties with New Delhi marks a sharp turnaround from 1998 when Japan imposed economic sanctions on India (and Pakistan) for conducting a series of nuclear tests. These sanctions were lifted in 2001, at Washington’s behest, to reward their support for the US-led “war on terror.” Since 2003, India has been the largest recipient of Japanese economic assistance, and economic ties are growing due to the 2011 Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement. Bilateral trade in 2011-12 reached $18.43 billion, up 34 per cent from the previous year, but remains modest given the $334 billion in Sino-Japanese trade in 2012. “The Indian nuclear tests of 1998 marked the lowest point in bilateral relations, as Japan reacted strongly to the nuclearisation of the subcontinent,” says Harsh Pant, professor of international relations at King’s College London. “Tokyo suspended economic assistance for three years as well as put on hold all political exchanges between the two nations. This strong reaction from Japan was in many ways understandable, given that the Japanese are the only people to have experienced attacks by nuclear weapons.” However, Pant explains, “many in India saw the Japanese reaction as hypocritical for apparently brushing aside India’s genuine security The ShinMaywa plane deal is seen as a significant boost to growing bilateral defence cooperation. To skirt the existing ban on military exports, a stripped down “civilian” version of the plane would be sold without the Identify Friend or Foe system. The Indian Navy is keen to acquire this aircraft and plans to equip it with an Israeli IFF system. Lifting the arms export ban to help Japan’s defence sector industries is an Abe priority in 2014. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 77. Shinzo Abe, Japan’s prime minister (left) and Manmohan Singh, India’s prime minister, shake hands during a news conference at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India, on Jan. 25, 2014. concerns even as Japan enjoyed the security guarantee of the US nuclear umbrella.” Japan, as the sole nation to suffer a nuclear attack, has strongly opposed nuclear proliferation on principle, and as such been an outspoken critic of India’s nuclear weapons programme and refusal to join the 1968 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) or 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). However, India also bases its non-participation in these regimes on principle: the nuclear weapons possessing nations granted themselves a monopoly on nuclear weapons and have not followed up on pledges to eliminate their nuclear arsenals. F ROM the Indian government’s perspective, these non-proliferation agreements created an exclusive club of status quo powers that left their nation marginalised and www.indianbuzz.com vulnerable. The 1962 border war with China was an unmitigated disaster for Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s friendly diplomacy toward Beijing, based on the false assumption that the two nations shared a common agenda and could cooperate to reciprocal advantage. The comprehensive defeat was also a shock for the Indian armed forces, exposing inadequate military preparation. Upping the ante China then detonated a nuclear device in 1964, sending shock waves through India’s security community and ensuring that it would follow suit. In 1974, India conducted its first nuclear test, dubbed “Smiling Buddha,” and its last tests in 1998. India maintains that its nuclear arsenal is for deterrence only and has declared a nuclear no-first-use policy. In 2008, the International Atomic Energy Agency reached an agreement with India to allow it access to PHOTOS: PIB India’s civilian nuclear reactors. This agreement paved the way for the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), under intense US pressure, to grant India a waiver in 2008 allowing it access to civilian nuclear technology and fuel from the 48 member states. Since the waiver was granted, India has reached an agreement with the US and France, among others, because they regard India as one of the most promising markets for nuclear reactor exports. Ironically, India’s 1974 nuclear test triggered the establishment of the NSG, but now Washington has abandoned the sanctions regime it once imposed and US President Barack Obama backs India’s membership in the group. Let’s make a deal The 2008 US-India Civil Nuclear Agreement brokered by the administration of President George gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 77
  • 78. GLOBAL SCAN japan-india jeff kingston W Bush has become the template for subsequent agreements, meaning that India’s unilateral pledge to refrain from nuclear tests has been accepted as sufficient guarantee. Until then, the NSG only cooperated with nations that signed the NPT. Under the terms of the agreement, in the event that India does conduct a nuclear test, any decision to terminate the accord and cut access would only be invoked after a year of consultations. T HIS is where Japan comes in. Exports of nuclear components and technology, as well as conventional arms, are potentially key elements of “Abenomics” and much is riding on the outcome. In 2013, Abe concluded Japan’s first nuclear reactor export agreement with Turkey for $22 billion and others are pending with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, while the Prime Minister has also lobbied governments in Central Europe, Vietnam and Indonesia. This is a remarkable turnaround from 2011 when the prospects for postFukushima Japan relying on nuclear energy, let alone exporting it, looked unlikely. Three major nuclear vendors have bagged contracts in India estimated at roughly $60 billion, but the final price will probably balloon given a history of cost overruns. For example, Finland’s order for Areva’s Evolutionary Pressurized Reactor (EPR) has nearly tripled in cost to €8.5 billion from the original price tag of €3 billion and India has ordered six of these reactors. Each of the major vendors feature significant Japanese stakes — GE/Hitachi, Westinghouse/ Toshiba and Areva/Mitsubishi — and all produce key reactor components in Japan. As such, they need the Japanese government to agree to 78 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 the NSG waiver and hammer out an accord with India. Abe is keen to cut a deal despite reservations within his party and ruling coalition, and has the numbers in the Diet to ignore public opposition as he did when ramming the notorious secrecy legislation through the Diet in December. Negotiations have stalled since 2008 mostly due to Japan’s insistence on India relinquishing its right to conduct nuclear tests and an immediate cessation of cooperation if India violates its self-imposed moratorium. Japan also opposes India’s desire to reprocess spent fuel. However, a recent pact with Turkey has a provision that allows it to enrich uranium and extract plutonium if agreed in writing, paving the way for exports of relevant Japanese technologies, so it is hard to imagine that India will settle for less. Furthermore, the Japanese government wants India to formally restate its commitment to India’s no-first-use nuclear weapons policy and support for non-proliferation in the pact. India’s position remains clear: Japan should accept the same deal as the US and other NSG members that don’t include such provisions. Discussions were suspended after the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdowns in March 2011, but resumed in May 2013. At the end of December, negotiators had not yet bridged differences on civilian nuclear cooperation or the sale of US-2 amphibious search-and-rescue military aircraft produced by ShinMaywa. The plane www.gfilesindia.com
  • 79. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, at the delegation level talks, in New Delhi on January 25 deal is seen as a significant boost to growing bilateral defence cooperation. To skirt the existing ban on military exports, a stripped down “civilian” version of the plane would be sold without the Identify Friend or Foe system. The Indian Navy is keen to acquire this aircraft and plans to equip it with an Israeli IFF system. Lifting the arms export ban to help Japan’s defence sector industries is an Abe priority in 2014. “Whether the two nations are able to sign the pact during Abe’s January visit would depend on how much risk he is willing to take on the nuclear front and whether it would be a good idea for him to sign a deal with a lameduck government in Delhi,” Pant says. “The Indian government would not be able to deliver any significant change www.indianbuzz.com in its posture as elections are round the corner and they can’t dilute their traditional stand on the CTBT.” W HILE postponement is possible, Jain believes that “the deal is going to go ahead. I don’t see much difference between the BJP (Indian People’s Party) and Congress as far as Japan-India relations are concerned. If anything, BJP might seek closer ties with Japan.” Jain adds, “As you know, in India, the agreement will be welcomed in all quarters; strategic analysts, former diplomats and military leaders are writing strongly in favour.” Dissensus But not everyone agrees. Japan’s first lady, Akie Abe, who has openly expressed opposition to her husband’s support for nuclear energy exports, told a Dec. 29 television programme that, “It remains anybody’s guess if proper maintenance will be provided overseas. I wonder how Japan would cope in case of an emergency.” According to opinion polls, her doubts are shared by a majority of Japanese, including the mayor of Nagasaki who criticised the deal in August. Citizens in India worry, too. “(The deal) pushes India’s ill-conceived nuclear expansion ahead, creates a bad precedent of rewarding India for its nuclear tests while others face sanctions . . . and the whole dynamics of India, Japan and US cozying up to contain China (will) destabilise Asia,” says PK Sundaram from the Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace, India. He acknowledges that Indian parties across the political spectrum support nuclear energy, but believes that large, sustained public protests against nuclear reactors, especially near a new nuclear plant sited at Kundankulam in Tamil Nadu, represent fallout from Fukushima and widespread scepticism about nuclear safety. Pankaj Mishra, an acclaimed writer from India, chides the Indian government for blaming “an unspecified ‘foreign hand’ for the (anti-nuclear) protests. Never mind that the muchdespised foreign hand helped build the Kudankulam plant, along with much of India’s nuclear infrastructure.” MG Devasahayam, a former IAS official, asked me whether Abe would approve the deal. I said yes, venturing that Abe is pro-India. He replied that gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 79
  • 80. GLOBAL SCAN japan-india jeff kingston he shouldn’t. “It is morally inappropriate for a country that has suffered the worst from nuclear holocausts in war as well as in peace to supply nuclear reactors and equipment to an over-populated country like India with limited land and water resources,” Devasahayam says. “India needs electricity that is cheap and affordable whereas nuclear power is expensive. If all costs — construction, commissioning, operation, decommissioning and safe storage of spent-fuel — are honestly factored in, nuclear power is way costlier than any other source of electricity.” H E worries that “Japan’s longterm relationship with India will be seriously jeopardised once the Indian public comes to realise the ill-effects of nuclear power on their life, livelihood, environment and future generations.” AV Ramana, a nuclear physicist based at Princeton University, agrees that nuclear energy does not make sense for India due to the high costs and safety concerns. In his book “The Power of Promise: Examining Nuclear Energy in India,” Ramana argues that nuclear energy is inappropriate for India on environmental, economic and technological grounds. “Japan, which is currently facing tremendous democratic opposition to restarting nuclear reactors within the country, is considering exporting nuclear reactor parts to a country where, again, there is significant opposition to nuclear power, a history of failure, poor technology choices and a lack of organisational learning,” Ramana says. He cites the continued emphasis on breeder reactors, abandoned by other nations due to cost and safety concerns, as evidence of institutional myopia. “Because of its centralised 80 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Exports of nuclear components and technology, as well as conventional arms, are potentially key elements of “Abenomics” and much is riding on the outcome. A recent pact between Japan and Turkey has a provision that allows it to enrich uranium and extract plutonium if agreed in writing, paving the way for exports of relevant Japanese technologies, so it is hard to imagine that India will settle for less. character and the huge costs involved, nuclear power cannot play a significant role in solving the energy needs of the vast majority of India’s population (and) only brings with it two of the familiar — and so far insoluble — problems associated with nuclear energy: susceptibility to catastrophic accidents and having to deal with radioactive waste that stays hazardous to human health for millennia,” he says. “Their reasons for such opposition are not difficult to discern. In the aftermath of March 11, 2011, people near an existing or proposed nuclear reactor can — and do — imagine themselves suffering a fate similar to those of the inhabitants of the areas around Fukushima,” he says. These anxieties appear warranted after A Gopalakrishnan, former chairman of India’s Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, revealed in April 2013 that the Russians used substandard components in building the Kundankulam reactors, planting a potential time bomb in southern India. Nuclear liability of suppliers is a key issue because it’s a potential deal breaker. According to Arun Jaitley, the BJP opposition leader in India’s Upper House, the issue of liability remains murky despite government efforts to finesse the issue. Nuclear vendors are relying on a clause in contracts signed with the Nuclear Power Corp. of India that is designed to insulate them from any right to recourse, but Jaitley argues that legally this won’t stand. Without an ironclad waiver on liability, however, most nuclear suppliers won’t proceed. As Ramana says, “the nuclear industry doesn’t like this business of being liable for anything at all.” Rivals suppliers in Russia and South Korea might capitalise on Japan’s misgivings. Seoul signed a civilian nuclear agreement with India in 2011 and earlier this month Park Geun-hye visited New Delhi to explore nuclear prospects. And then there is the geo-strategic angle; China recently announced it would fund and build a nuclear plant in Karachi, Pakistan — India’s arch-enemy. The pressures on Japan from the global nuclear industrial complex are also intense, reinforced by lucrative contract awards to consortium involving Japanese firms, including the GE/ Hitachi nuclear project in Gujarat, where the presumptive next Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, is now chief minister. Abe, the pitchman-in-chief, is determined to seal the deal worth tens of billions while millions of fingers are crossed that his gamble doesn’t lead to “Abegeddon.” g Jeff Kingston lives in Tokyo, teaches history at Temple University Japan. “Contemporary Japan” (Wiley-Blackwell, 2012) is his most recent book. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 81. BOOK REVIEW national security non-fiction by K SUBRAMANIAM Strategic confinement T HE history of independent India will recognise the contributions of many distinguished ministers of the Union Cabinet. But it is difficult to recall many from the post-Nehru generations who have reflected on the great policy issues they confronted in office. Jaswant Singh, who served as the minister for foreign affairs, defence, and finance, and headed the Planning Commission, is clearly an exception. It is with great anticipation, then, one picks up Singh’s latest book, India at Risk. He begins by asking a very big question. Why does India continue to flounder when it comes to national security management? Jaswant Singh identifies a number of factors, including the debilitating impact of the Partition that broke up the strategic unity of the subcontinent, the turbulence generated by nation building, the lack of sensibility to India’s territoriality, and the failure to develop a statecraft that can get on top of the many security challenges confronting India. Much of the book is devoted to a critical assessment of the Jammu and Kashmir war in 1947-48, the wars with China and Pakistan in 1962 and 1965 respectively, and the liberation of Bangladesh. This is not the traditional attack from the opposition on Jawaharlal Nehru and the Congress party for their deemed failures. Singh is more philosophical than polemical in his criticisms of Indian mis-steps in the first decades after Independence. Singh has an incisive chapter on what he calls “India’s destructive decades”—the 1970s and 1980s—when the nation was at war with itself in the Punjab, Assam and the North East. www.indianbuzz.com Title: India at Risk: Mistakes, Misconceptions and Misadventures of Security Policy Author: Jaswant Singh Publisher: Rupa Publications Pages: 292 Price: `595 He is at his clinical best in assessing India’s unsuccessful military intervention in Sri Lanka in the late 1980s. The last two chapters are of great interest, for they deal with security issues that Singh was involved with as a senior minister. After all, this was a period when India ended its prolonged atomic ambivalence, conducted five nuclear tests, declared itself a nuclear weapon power, sought to negotiate on Kashmir with Pakistan, launched military operations to vacate Pakistan’s Kargil aggression, explored a boundary settlement with China, and coped with the mounting challenges of terrorism. Singh, however, whets the appetite but stops short of serving the main course. The short chapter on nuclear issues does not walk us through the complex manoeuvre that he and his colleagues in the NDA government undertook to soften the negative international reaction and lay the foundation for India’s eventual accommodation with the United States and the global nuclear order. He does much better in his final chapter where he lays out the story of Vajpayee’s bus journey to Lahore, the response to the Kargil surprise, and Kandahar hijacking and the Agra debacle with Gen. Pervez Musharraf. His valuable narrative plugs some of the gaps in what is known about these controversial events. Given his stature and record, we expect more from Singh. A detached but critical review of the Vajpayee years, for example, would have been immensely instructive for the next generation of Indian leaders. One would urge Singh to take up on this unfinished task, especially the one tantalising proposition that he begins and ends India at Risk with. Singh insists that India will remain “immobilised in thought” and “physically impaired in its responses” if it does not break out of the strategic confinement imposed by four lines: Durand Line, McMahon Line, Line of Control, and Line of Actual Control. Few have thought more deeply than Singh on the imperatives of consolidating India’s territoriality. The Congress government, despite a decade-long tenure, has failed to finish what Vajpayee started with Pakistan, China and the neighbourhood. One hopes that in his next book, Singh will elaborate on how India can overcome the consequences of Partition, settle its border disputes, reimagine its frontiers and restore the strategic unity of the subcontinent. g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 81
  • 82. MY CORNER rules amitabh thakur Improper conduct Why the Delhi Ministers’ personal stand on Delhi police is completely incorrect T HE All India Services (Conduct) Rules, 1968 through which we, as IAS and IPS officers, are governed states in the very beginning of Rule 3-“The direction of the official superior shall ordinarily be in writing. Where the issue of oral direction becomes unavoidable, the official superior shall confirm it in writing immediately thereafter” and “A member of the Service who has received oral direction from his official superior shall seek confirmation of the same in writing, as early as possible and in such case, it shall be the duty of the official superior to confirm the direction in writing.” The same kind of conduct rules apply for all other services. What it means is that orders can come only in a written manner or need to be immediately put in writing. The other aspect is that the executive power of the Union extends to matters stated in Article 73 of the Constitution while that of the State shall extend to matters stated in Article 162. The Delhi Government has specific Articles 239AA and 239AB devoted to it in the Constitution which places it in a special position. As per section 44 of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991, the President of India shall make rules (a) for the allocation of business to the Ministers in so far as it is business with respect to which the Lieutenant Governor is required to act on the aid and advice of his Council of Ministers; and (b) for the more 82 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 convenient transaction of business with the ministers, including the procedure to be adopted in the case of a difference of opinion between the Lieutenant Governor and the Council of Ministers or a Minister. In exercise of the powers conferred by section 44 of the above Act, the President of India made the Transaction of Business of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Rules, 1993. Rule 15 says that proposals or matters may be disposed of by or under the authority of the Minister-in-charge who may, by means of standing orders, give such directions as he thinks fit for the disposal of proposals or matters in his Department. From the above constitutional and legal provisions, it is clear that the Minister in charge of the Department is solely responsible for the final decision-making and functioning of their respective Department. But at The basic issue is that the ministers gave these directions in their individual capacity; they were oral orders and such oral orders in individual capacities are against the basic rules of administration. The same conduct rules apply to all services. the same time, it is also clear that the Minister does not have authority and power over a Department or agency beyond what he has been assigned. What happened in Delhi recently where two ministers went to different places in Delhi and gave directions to the Delhi police personnel for certain raids and acts which the policemen refused to comply with needs to be seen in the light of the above legal provisions. While it is true that there is a big section of people who are currently seen to be supporting the ministers’ personal actions but if the above matter is seen from an academic perspective, many facts would emerge that seem to state that not only is the ministers’ stand improper, it is also dangerous, having its own long-term repercussions. As far as the facts that have emerged through media reports, first, the two ministers in their individual capacity gave certain oral directions and when refused by the policemen, they seemed to be arguing and fighting with the Delhi police persons and then were seen building pressure to get them suspended. As a professional, this goes against the basic concept of autonomy in professional work. To me, it is a further manifestation of undue political interference. There are many who seem to be supporting the ministers’ stand because they think that they were asking for action in common public good while the policemen were not acting and were showing inaction because of www.gfilesindia.com
  • 83. against the basic rules of administration, as has been explained above. In addition, the ministers headed other departments and as per the Rules of Business and the Delhi State Act, they did not have the legal authority to direct and issue orders to the policemen. W HETHER the police is today working as a professional organisation or not, the fact remains that it would be in the benefit of the entire nation and society that it strives to become a professional body. If such a concept is accepted, at least in theory, then the policemen were legally absolutely correct in refusing these oral personal orders—cent per cent correct. Whatever the ministers wanted to do was not in their administrative control and they tried ARUNA definite personal and extraneous motives, related with corrupt motives. Then, there also comes in play the common public perception about policemen, which whether one likes it or not, is not very positive. As a senior police officer, I might personally dislike it or might even try to refute it, but this does not alter the fact that a reasonable section of our population perceives the police as being unresponsive, corrupt, ineffective and siding with the wrong people. But it needs to be understood that the issue here is not whether all policemen are good or bad; it is also not whether the orders of the minister were correct or not. The basic issue is that the ministers gave these directions in their individual capacity; they were oral orders and such oral orders in individual capacities are to enforce it through their external influence as being a minister of government, which again goes against the basic principles of administration. It was not the ministers’ right or duty to impose their will on these matters even if they might have been factually correct because such a trend will lead to utter chaos and complete dictatorship. If a similarity can be thought of, it is almost like the act of police encounters that are so blatantly criticised by right-thinking people, as it will lead to heavy misuse of such authority and functioning. The worst is that now these ministers in their individual capacity and the chief minister in his individual capacity and as political persons are building unwarranted and improper pressure to get these policemen suspended, just because they disobeyed the oral, unauthorised orders of some ministers. It is definitely legally and administratively incorrect. It also reflects the open misuse of authority. If such a thing actually happens, it will be a sad day for the Indian administrative system and functioning. Just because policemen carry a bad reputation in the eyes of many, it does not give anyone a right to issue improper and legally incorrect dictates and adopt such short-cuts. Instead, all efforts need to be taken to make all the government agencies, including the police, autonomous professional bodies, where extraneous influences of politicians and political masters, particularly beyond their domain of legal influence gets pruned to the minimum. This is the minimum required for better governance, genuinely. g Amitabh Thakur, IPS officer from UP, is also working for transparency in governance. The views expressed are personal. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 83
  • 84. SILLY POINT politics mk kaw The second coming of Arvind Kejriwal I N a piece entitled ‘The Rise and Fall of Team Anna’ in gfiles, soon after the Lok Pal Bill was not passed by the RajyaSabha about two years back, I had asked a rhetorical question: Will there be a second coming for Team Anna? I noted that the Christians had been waiting in vain for the second coming of Jesus Christ for the last 2,000 years. The Buddhists similarly believed that Gautama the Buddha will come again as Lord Maitreya. The Theosophists, led by Annie Besant, even projected Jiddu Krishnamurti as Lord Maitreya, but the anointed apostle threw off the yoke, disbanded the Order of the Star and declared that he was not the Messiah. Would there be a second coming for Team Anna, I asked. My answer was: “I doubt it. They had their chance and they missed it.” I was wrong. Kejriwal has bounced back. Today, Kejriwal is a phenomenon. He has suddenly burst on the national scene like an unlikely comet, leaving old stalwarts open-mouthed in dismay. He pontificates on political issues with the confidence of an old campaigner, and enunciates the elements of a new utopia with messianic fervour. Having heard him define the New Polity in driblets, I wanted to see whether there was a document which contained the detailed contours of his proposal. I discovered a slim 151 page book called Swaraj, published by Harper Collins in August 2012. It is priced at a modest `150, as Kejriwal has forgone his royalty. It is curious that Kejriwal should have called his manifesto ‘Swaraj’, just like Mahatma Gandhi. I have often felt that Gandhi is the unstated inspiration for Kejriwal, with a broad similarity of perceptions with regard to the primacy of the village, non-violent non-cooperation, peaceful agitation, fast unto death, involvement of millions of common people, taking up issues with high emotive appeal, hating the sin and not the sinner, simplicity in personal life and so on. Like Gandhi, he has a soft exterior, but inside he is as tenacious as steel. The list is virtually endless. The book has a Foreword by Anna Hazare, who calls it the manifesto of the India of tomorrow. Those were happier days before the two stalwarts of the India against 84 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Corruption movement drifted apart. The reasons for the split have now come out into the open. Kejriwal wanted to launch a new political party. Anna felt that politics was like mud; they would be sullied by the contact. Kejriwal argued that if politics was mud, they would need to get into the mire and clean it up. This conflict of perception is reminiscent of the differences that cropped up between Gandhi and Nehru on many issues, like the acceptance of Partition, appeasement of Mohammad Ali Jinnah and the disbandment of the Congress Party after the achievement of freedom, to give only a few examples. In the Preface, Kejriwal says that we fought for Independence from the British because we wanted swaraj, or self-rule. But this did not happen. The British went away, but their system remained in place. We do not want leaders and officers sitting in Delhi to formulate development schemes for the people. Self-rule means that the government should function according to the wishes of the people. Laws, rules and regulations should be formulated with the consent and participation of the people. The people should decide all momentous issues in a scientific and systematic manner, so that our resources like land, water, coal, iron ore, etc., are not taken away by foreign governments and investors, domestic business houses, corrupt politicians and bureaucrats for a pittance. In the present system of governance, the people have only one right: the right to vote for their representatives in Parliament, vidhan sabha, and self-governing institutions like Panchayati Raj bodies and municipal committees and corporations. This power is exercised only once in five years. The politicians woo the voters for a little while during the electoral process and promptly forget them for the next five years. The people have no control over government employees, who are supposed to serve them. Even if the teacher does not attend the school, the doctor does not give medicines or the constable does not record their FIR, they have no remedy except to complain to their superiors with little effect. The gram sabha cannot summon these employees for an explanation, stop their salaries or punish them. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 85. ARUNA T HE people have no control over government funds. Whenever the people demand something, they are told that there are no funds. On the other hand, there are plenty of funds for schemes, like old age pensions, widow pensions, NREGA, ration, etc., formulated on all -India basis by planners sitting in Delhi and State capitals. The people are not consulted while formulating laws, rules and schemes. Nobody asks them when their land is acquired for the benefit of foreign and indigenous companies. Natural resources are allotted to large business houses, charging them a tiny fraction of what they earn from their disposal. Forests, which used to www.indianbuzz.com serve the needs of tribals living in or near them and were not interfered with even by the mighty British, were taken over by the forest departments after Independence and massive deforestation took place. In many cities, water is being distributed by companies. Whole rivers are being gobbled up in the wake of dam construction. Kejriwal poses the question as to why India is up for sale and why the people are unable to do anything to stave off the challenge. His answer: There is no democracy in India. The people have understood the game. They do not find the politics of voting once in five years as acceptable. “We, the gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 85
  • 86. SILLY POINT politics mk kaw people” want a direct participation in power. In Kejriwal’s utopia, the people shall take decisions, and politicians and officials will have to implement them. It might be argued that a decentralised democracy exists in India, but the Panchayati Raj system suffers from several infirmities. The panchayats have very limited powers and whatever limited powers they have, vest in the sarpanch and not in the gram sabha. The people have no power to take action against a corrupt sarpanch. All the powers vest in the district collector and the State government. What is required is a shift of powers from the State governments, district collectors and sarpanches to the gram sabhas. ers in the gram sabhas will inexorably lead to corruption, favouritism, groupism, repression of Dalits, strengthening of outdated institutions like khap panchayats, perpetuation of traditional social evils and so on. He goes on to suggest that there should be mohalla sabhas in towns too, and all the suggestions made for empowering gram sabhas should be applied to urban areas too. Swaraj: A Critical Appraisal There is no doubt in my mind that Kejriwal has hit upon a fundamental truth about the system of governance in this country. It is that we have over-centralised the entire structure of economic planning. On the one hand, we wish to remove controls and empower the private EJRIWAL has cited the examples from other sector, but on the other hand, we have not dismantled countries to demonstrate that he is not suggesting the planning apparatus, a reminder of the balmy days something unique or eccentric. In the US, a small of the socialistic pattern of society and the Mahalnobis municipality in the State of Oregon disallowed a proposal model and development of the commanding heights of of Walmart to open a store in their town. Their decision the economy. was final. In Brazil, a budget for slum areas was prepared Many of us have balked at the distinction made in on the streets in consultation with the beneficiaries and the various budgets between plan and even the World Bank had to concede non-plan expenditure, a distinction that there was, consequently, tremenKejriwal says the gram dous development. In Switzerland, if sabhas, consisting of all that has harmed the system of govmore than factor. 50,000 persons sign a petition and ask the residents of a village, ernance topsy-turveyany other we get In our system, for a law, it has to be presented as an should be vested with all unlimited amounts of money to build act in the parliament. Thus, there is direct participation in governance in powers. They should have new assets, schemes and projects, but we are starved to death with respect to many countries of the world. the power to punish maintenance of assets and infrastrucSo what actually needs to be done? ture already in existence. Kejriwal says that the gram sabhas, which consist of all The media has been playing its usual games. After the residents of a village, should be vested with all powthe AAP’s surprise win in December 2013, they raised ers. They should appoint the local officials and have the Kejriwal to the skies and catapulted him to the pedestal power to summon anyone to the meeting of the sabha. of a possible winner of the plum position of the Prime They should have the power to punish and to stop the Minister. The latest opinion polls have predicted just salary. 7 to 12 seats to AAP in the elections to the Lok Sabha. No schematic funds should be spent in a village. It Political parties and their supporters in big business and would be better to allot an untied fund to the sabha, the media are attacking Kejriwal and his chief lieutenants which they can spend as they wish. They could give a like sharks on non-issues like a poem written six years house to a homeless family, or support some indigent ago, a dharna against police inaction and a foiled attempt with foodgrain, or grant a loan to a person for starting to persuade the police to raid a suspect premises. a business, or set up factories, or grain banks. Thus they They fail to recognise a paradigm shift in the politicould ensure that no one in the village died of hunger, cal dialogue of this country. It is immaterial whether or was forced to take a loan from a moneylender at an Kejriwal and the AAP survive. Politics in India will never exorbitant rate of interest, or committed suicide due to be the same again. Kejriwal has had his Second Coming. frustration. Whether he is the messiah we have all been waiting for, Towards the end, Kejriwal anticipates the various misonly time will tell! g givings people have about the proposed reforms package. He pooh-poohs the suggestion that vesting of powMK Kaw is a former Secretary, Government of India K 86 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 87. STOCK DOCTOR dr gs sood T Signs of turnaround HE opinion polls so far have predicted that the Narendra Modi-led BJP is likely to be the single largest party in the general elections to be held in April-May, 2014. The BJP with its allies forming stable government can be the best case scenario for the market that will attract foreign institutional investors (FIIs) in hordes despite tapering fears. Otherwise too, the slight moderation in the bond buying programme of Fed has not had any significant impact and FIIs have, by and large, been sticking to the Indian market. However, the recent upset made by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Delhi can change the scenario on the national front as well. A fractured and uncertain verdict will be the worst news for the market as heightened uncertainty will take a heavy toll on the economy. However, things have otherwise started improving for the economy with the current account deficit (CAD) down. The currency crisis appears to be over and the same is reflected in the return of FIIs to the debt market. Though rising yields in the US may revert flows but the impending hikes by the RBI in repo rates may see the flow continuing for some time. The good monsoons have started showing its impact on food inflation coupled with lower imports; the overall inflation has started moderating. Growth is, however, likely to remain slow due to tight liquidity and low business confidence levels in the private sector hampering new capex initiatives. Stretched government finances and the need to contain the fiscal deficit will further weigh on growth. Valuation wise, the Sensex is trading at around 14 times forward earnings of fiscal 2015 and at around 16 times fiscal 2014 earnings; this can, at best, be described to be reasonable. There may not be an immediate sharp upside, but the market has a tendency to discount the future fairly in advance whenever some significant developments such as formation of a new government or the like happen. Also, the fact that both individual and institutional domestic investors are massively under invested in equities, a bull run may just be waiting to happen. Added to this, most of the sectors have shown muted growth and are likely to see a major turnaround. Investors will do well to pay attention to sectors that are yet to participate in the rally and ignore those that have already run up a lot. On this count, capital goods, infrastructure and cyclicals need to be looked at closely since as soon as capex cycle begins to pick up momentum, these sectors are likely to outperform for at least 2-3 years. Select individual stocks on their strength ignoring the Sensex levels that is near its all-time high and buy on dips. g Stock Shop R B BY AKESH HARDWAJ NIIT (CMP `26) I NCORPORATED in 1981, NIIT Limited is one of India’s premiere IT training companies. Besides IT training services, it also provides learning solutions to schools and corporates. It has forayed into providing training in the vocational space through its skill building vertical for emerging sectors like IT/ ITES, retail, finance and other sectors. NIIT management has swiftly moved to remedy the situation arising from slowdown in IT related training business by refocusing on growth opportunities, exiting non- profitable businesses and revamping existing offerings. Change in the business mix is expected to help the company regain its growth trajectory. Its new offerings of Cloud Campus and curriculum courses for data analytics being in line with demand trends are likely to be the future engines of growth. Besides, the company has taken steps to cut cost by shutting down non-profitable locations and courses. NIIT y-o-y revenue was down by 23.8 per cent to `960.8 crore in FY13 as compared to FY12. EBITDA margins were down by 700 bps to 4.4 per cent primarily due to the concerns discussed. The company incurred a loss of `24.7 crore in comparison to a profit of `62.1 crore in FY12. The quarter ending December 2013 has reported a net loss of `15 crore and may just be the end of the downslide. The company has an uninterrupted dividend record with the CMP giving a dividend yield of around 6.5 per cent and at a fair discount to its book value. It also has a 24.1 per cent stake in NIIT Technologies, which is a premiere IT Services Solutions Company. An investment with a time span of around 2 years can give decent returns. The author has no exposure in the stock recommended in this column. gfiles does not accept responsibility for investment decisions by readers of this column. Investment-related queries may be sent to editor@gfilesindia.com with Bhardwaj’s name in the subject line. www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 87
  • 88. EXHIBITION O novel and ashok lavasa Moments and memories by K SUBRAMANIAM N OVEL and Ashok Lavasa carried forward their journey of exploring nature and brought its many facets together in an exhibition of their photographs in New Delhi recently. This time, their ‘Stand & Stare’ collection offers images of ‘Mates & Moments’. Apparently these seem unrelated as many things in the world would seem to the human eye. The inward eye, however, is able to discover the inherent harmony that pervades creation. Novel and Ashok Lavasa are not professional photographers. They are two sensitive souls that are out to assimilate life. They do so by a passionate lifestyle that reflects in their work, social interaction and incessant travel when they interact with nature. Mountains, waterfalls, the setting and 88 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 rising sun, trees, monuments and men all form a part of their landscape. The stripes of a zebra, the spots of a giraffe, and lions on a tree are as enchanting as the eyes of birds in bliss or flapping their wings in the sands of a desert. The balance in life that companionship brings is akin to the glory reflected in the light and shade created by the sun when its rays land on an object that shines, at the same time diverting the journey of the rays and creating a contrast that completes the harmony of vision. The shimmering waters of the sea, the glittering peaks of the mountains, trees bearing the burden of spring and trees bereft of leaves represent the harmony of life. Mates in many moods, mountains in majestic isolation and moments that live in memory – all these captured in moments of splendid irony and pleasing tranquillity. They say that “in these times of tension and turmoil, it is tolerance, togetherness and tenderness that will take us to the other end. Companionship is part of nature, compassion brings beings closer and together they create indelible moments.” The photograph of the Berlin Wall with graffiti on it dominates the gallery as a symbol of the theme of the exhibition with two countries that once stood divided by an artificial barrier now stand united as ‘mates’ with one single ‘moment’ determining the destiny of millions. The Berlin Wall was erected in the dead of night. Just past midnight on the night of August 12-13, 1961. For 28 years, families, friends, and lovers across the border were separated from their loved ones. Its destruction, which was nearly as instantaneous as its creation, was celebrated around the world. On the eve of November 9, 1989, as an official announcement was made by www.gfilesindia.com
  • 89. PHOTOS: RAJEEV TYAGI East German government, the Berlin Wall was inundated with people from both sides. Some began chipping at the Wall with hammers and chisels. These people were nicknamed “Mauerspechte” (wall woodpeckers). There was an impromptu celebration, with people hugging, kissing, singing, cheering, and crying. East and West Germany reunified into a single German state on October 3, 1990. Little is left of the Wall at its original site. The broken walls of a city that unite two countries mark that ‘mating moment’ when barriers erected by history and impediments of ideology are dissolved. Hearts and homes divided by humans are united. Yet another photograph marks the recreation of those that perished in an accident in 1628 in Sweden when a ship named ‘Vasa’ sank. It was a fearsome war machine with 64 guns and 450 men, of them 300 soldiers. It sank within minutes of its launch on August 10, 1628 but was salvaged after 333 years on April 24, 1961 and is now preserved in the Vasa Museum in Stockholm. It is believed that about 30 men, women and children died in the catastrophe. At least 15 skeletons were found during excavations. Some were found outside the ship but have been dated by the radiocarbon method, and were www.indianbuzz.com most probably victims also. In connection with research on these skeletons, each has been given a name in alphabetical order following the Swedish letter-naming system – “Adam”, “Beata”, “Cesar”, etc. What can be said about “Adam” is that he was 35-40 years old, 165 cm tall and in good health, but that in his youth he had received a blow to the face. He was one of the first skeletons to be salvaged by divers in 1958. The individual F, “Filip”, was probably a sailor who died at his post. He was c. 30 years old, 163 cm tall and had a set of teeth that gave him a special smile. “Ylva” was identified in the beginning as a boy, but was in fact a 16-year-old girl in poor health. Her skeleton shows several injuries and she was stooped and undernourished. The unknown dead have been given a name and a new life. The Lavasas are compulsive travellers, love music, river rafting, trekking, racquet games and reading. Novel worked for the State Bank of India for 28 years, is now an entrepreneur growing exotic vegetables in a poly house, organises adventure camps for women and is also a CSR consultant. Her husband Ashok is in the Indian Administrative Service and is currently posted as Secretary, Civil Aviation, in Government of India. While Novel has written occasional pieces on their travels, Ashok’s first book ‘An Uncivil Servant’ was published in 2006. They have participated in various exhibitions and have also had solo exhibitions in different cities. The last exhibition of their photographs ‘Inward Eye’ was held in 2010 in New Delhi. g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 89
  • 90. birthdays IAS officers’ birthdays Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 IAS officers’ birthdays Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 Raj Kumar Mathur Vandana Krishna RS Doon Pankaj Yadav CADRE: MADHYA PRADESH CADRE: MAHARASHTRA CADRE: HARYANA CADRE: HARYANA rkmathur95@ias.nic.in kvandna@ias.nic.in doonrs@ias.nic.in ypankaj@ias.nic.in Aditya Prasad Padhi Prerna Puri Sheela Balakrishnan Vijay Kumar CADRE: ODISHA CADRE: UNION TERRITORY CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: MAHARASHTRA padhiap@ias.nic.in prerna.ias@ias.nic.in sheelab@ias.nic.in kumarv2@ias.nic.in Dinesh Kumar Akshat Gupta Shahmeena Husain Priyatu Mandal CADRE: RAJASTHAN CADRE: GUJARAT CADRE: GUJARAT CADRE: HIMACHAL PRADESH kdinesh@ias.nic.in akshat.ias@ias.nic.in husains@ias.nic.in priyatumandal.ias@ias.nic.in Bhagyesh Vasudev Jha Narayan Singh Radha S Raturi Anurag Agarwal CADRE: GUJARAT CADRE: CHHATTISGARH CADRE: UTTARANCHAL CADRE: PUNJAB jhabv@ias.nic.in singhn2@ias.nic.in raturirs@ias.nic.in agarwala@ias.nic.in Neelam P Kasni Aarti Ahuja Reena Ray Bhaskar Mushahary CADRE: HARYANA CADRE: ODISHA CADRE: UNION TERRITORY CADRE: ASSAM-MEGHALAYA kasninp@ias.nic.in ahujaa@ias.nic.in rayr@ias.nic.in bhaskarm@ias.nic.in Barun Kumar Ray B Dhar Sanjay Ajoykumar Mukerjee Durgesh Chandra Mishra CADRE: WEST BENGAL CADRE: ASSAM-MEGHALAYA CADRE: MAHARASHTRA CADRE: CHHATTISGARH raybk@ias.nic.in 01AM026111@ias.nic.in mukerjee@ias.nic.in mdurgesh@ias.nic.in Vivek Rae Surender Kumar Sood Kannegi Packianathan Santosh Babu CADRE: UNION TERRITORY CADRE: HIMACHAL PRADESH CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: TAMIL NADU raevivek@ias.nic.in soodsk@ias.nic.in packiana@ias.nic.in babus@ias.nic.in Bandana Preyashi T Cholongse Sangtam Arbind Prasad DK Raval CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: NAGALAND CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: GUJARAT bpreyashi@ias.nic.in tc.sangtam@ias.nic.in prasadd1@ias.nic.in ravaldk@ias.nic.in Ashish Chatterjee Nikunja Kishore Sundaray Aboobacker Siddique P Ishita Roy CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: ODISHA CADRE: JHARKHAND CADRE: KERALA cashish@ias.nic.in sundaray@ias.nic.in aboobacker@ias.nic.in royi@ias.nic.in R Sudhan Sanjeev Chopra Ravindra Kumar Pastor A Ashok CADRE: MANIPUR-TRIPURA CADRE: WEST BENGAL CADRE: MADHYA PRADESH CADRE: ANDRA PRADESH rsudhan.ias@ias.nic.in chopras2@ias.nic.in pastorrk@ias.nic.in ashoka@ias.nic.in Jiji Thomson K Tokughasukhalu M Malik Ferozekhan Madan Lal Meena CADRE: KERALA CADRE: NAGALAND CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: WEST BENGAL thomsonj@ias.nic.in Tokughasukhalu@ias.nic.in ferozekh@ias.nic.in mmadan@ias.nic.in S Avhad Neelkanth Rahul Tiwari Siddharth Jain Anil Shrivastava CADRE: PUNJAB CADRE: PUNJAB CADRE: ANDRA PRADESH CADRE: MADHYA PRADESH neelkant@ias.nic.in trahul@ias.nic.in jains6@ias.nic.in shrianil@ias.nic.in Swaran Singh Sandhya Bhullar Kalpana Awasthi Katru Rama Mohana Rao CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: GUJARAT CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH singhs9@ias.nic.in sbhullar@ias.nic.in awasthik@ias.nic.in raokr3@ias.nic.in 16-02-1956 17-02-1960 17-02-1972 18-02-1955 19-02-1956 19-02-1967 20-02-1954 21-02-1974 21-02-1973 22-02-1978 23-02-1956 23-02-1972 24-02-1955 25-02-1962 26-02-1981 27-02-1977 28-02-1954 28-02-1964 01-03-1955 01-03-1948 01-03-1955 02-03-1963 03-03-1961 04-03-1954 04-03-1976 05-03-1978 05-03-1955 05-03-1954 06-03-1972 06-03-1964 06-03-1961 07-03-1972 07-03-1955 08-03-1956 08-03-1974 08-03-1954 08-03-1954 09-03-1976 09-03-1964 10-03-1977 10-03-1954 11-03-1980 11-03-1966 12-03-1956 12-03-1954 12-03-1968 13-03-1955 13-03-1965 14-03-1960 14-03-1957 15-03-1959 15-03-1963 For the complete list, see www.gfilesindia.com 90 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 91. IPS officers’ birthdays Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 IPS officers’ birthdays Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 Lingala Vijaya Prasad Kamal Kumar Saini Gopal B Hosur Rajiv Kapoor CADRE: AGMUT CADRE: JAMMU & KASHMIR CADRE: KARNATAKA CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH lvprasad@mail.svpnpa.gov.in saini@mail.svpnpa.gov.in gopalbh@mail.svpnpa.gov.in rkapoor@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Maneesh Chaudhry Ravi Kumar S Nallasivam Amar Kanti Sarkar CADRE: HARYANA CADRE: HARYANA CADRE: TAMIL NADU CADRE: WEST BENGAL sp.pkl@hry.nic.in ravikr@mail.svpnpa.gov.in nallasivam@mail.svpnpa.gov.in akantisarkar@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Pramod Kumar Thakur Omendra Bhardwaj Jai Prakash Narayan Singh B B Misra CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: RAJASTHAN CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: ASSAM-MEGHALAYA pk_thakur@mail.svpnpa.gov.in bhardwaj@mail.svpnpa.gov.in jaiprakash@mail.svpnpa.gov.in bbmisra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Alok Puri M M Praharaj Mohan Singh Tomar Sanjay Mathur CADRE: JAMMU & KASHMIR CADRE: ODISHA CADRE: CHHATTISGARH CADRE: TAMIL NADU alokpuri@mail.svpnpa.gov.in mmpraharaj@mail.svpnpa.gov.in mstomar@mail.svpnpa.gov.in sknag@mail.svpnpa.gov.in M N Krishnamurthy Santosh Mehra Smt Anupam Saxena Ashok Kumar Jain CADRE: KERALA CADRE: ANDHRA PRADESH CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH CADRE: MADHYA PRADESH krishnamurthy@mail.svpnpa.gov.in santoshmehra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in anupam@mail.svpnpa.gov.in ak_jain@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Bhim Sain Bassi K P Raghuwanshi L Ram Bishnoi Ms Sachi Ghildyal CADRE: AGMUT CADRE: MAHARASHTRA CADRE: ASSAM-MEGHALAYA CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH bsbassi@mail.svpnpa.gov.in kpraghuwanshi@mail.svpnpa.gov.in lrambishnoi@mail.svpnpa.gov.in shachi@mail.svpnpa.gov.in L Thechamo Lotha Ramesh Chandra Singh M Jagan Mohan Reddy Arvind Kumar Jain CADRE: NAGALAND CADRE: PUNJAB CADRE: ANDHRA PRADESH CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH ltlotha@mail.svpnpa.gov.in rcsingh@mail.svpnpa.gov.in mjmreddy@mail.svpnpa.gov.in aravindkj@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Ravinder Paul Singh R K Chauhan Naval Bajaj Kulwant Kumar CADRE: PUNJAB CADRE: RAJASTHAN CADRE: MAHARASHTRA CADRE: MAHARASHTRA ravinderpaul@mail.svpnpa.gov.in rkchauhan@mail.svpnpa.gov.in nbajaj@mail.svpnpa.gov.in kulwantkumar@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Amit Lodha Themthing Nhashangva K V Sharat Chandra Rakesh Kumar Mishra CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: MANIPUR-TRIPURA CADRE: KARNATAKA CADRE: BIHAR amitlodha@mail.svpnpa.gov.in themthing2002@yahoo.co.in kvschandra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in rmishra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Amit Chandra T Norbu Mukhtar Mohsin S M Sahai CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH CADRE: SIKKIM CADRE: UTTARAKHAND CADRE: JAMMU & KASHMIR amitchandra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in norbu@mail.svpnpa.gov.in mohsinips@yahoo.com smsahai@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Ajit Joy T Krishna Prasad K Ramchandran Kailash Chandra Meena CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: ANDHRA PRADESH CADRE: MAHARASHTRA CADRE: WEST BENGAL ajitjoy@mail.svpnpa.gov.in tkprasad@mail.svpnpa.gov.in ramchandran@mail.svpnpa.gov.in kcmeena@mail.svpnpa.gov.in L Lenkhottan Doungel Brajesh Kumar Jha Kundan Krishna G Surya Prakash Rao CADRE: WEST BENGAL CADRE: GUJARAT CADRE: BIHAR CADRE: ANDHRA PRADESH lldoungel@mail.svpnpa.gov.in bkjha@mail.svpnpa.gov.in kundankrishna@mail.svpnpa.gov.in gsprao@mail.svpnpa.gov.in Vimla Mehra Virendra Kumar Akhil Kumar Roy Rajesh Kumar CADRE: AGMUT CADRE: UTTAR PRADESH CADRE: WEST BENGAL CADRE: ODISHA vimlamehra@mail.svpnpa.gov.in bk_singh@mail.svpnpa.gov.in akhilhroy@mail.svpnpa.gov.in rajeshkumar@mail.svpnpa.gov.in 16-02-1972 17-02-1981 18-02-1958 18-02-1958 19-02-1955 20-02-1956 21-02-1954 22-02-1957 22-02-1974 23-02-1968 24-02-1969 25-02-1958 26-02-1956 26-02-1954 26-02-1955 27-02-1955 28-02-1954 28-02-1963 01-03-1955 01-03-1963 01-03-1949 01-03-1975 02-03-1954 02-03-1960 03-03-1973 04-03-1960 04-03-1954 04-03-1956 05-03-1949 05-03-1954 05-03-1971 06-03-1963 06-03-1950 07-03-1969 07-03-1967 07-03-1977 08-03-1948 08-03-1969 09-03-1956 10-03-1954 10-03-1956 10-03-1955 11-03-1968 12-03-1955 12-03-1977 13-03-1955 13-03-1963 14-03-1960 14-03-1963 15-03-1961 15-03-1957 15-03-1971 For the complete list, see www.gfilesindia.com www.indianbuzz.com gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 91
  • 92. birthdays Lok Sabha Members Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 Lok Sabha Members Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2013 May 16, 2013 — Jun 2014 Rajagopal Lagadapati J K Ritheesh Shivakumar Kameshwar Baitha Nama Nageswara Rao INC (Andhra Pradesh DMK (Tamil Nadu) JMM (Jharkhand) TDP (Andhra Pradesh) rajalanco@yahoo.com shivaa2004@yahoo.co.in Kalva K Chandrasekhar Rao K H Muniyappa TRS (Andhra Pradesh) INC (Karnataka) 16-02-1964 17-02-1954 05-03-1973 07-03-1948 khmuni@sansad.nic.in Praful Manoharbhai Patel 17-02-1957 Adhi Sankar NCP (Maharashtra) 07-03-1957 Vishnu Deo Sai adhi@sansad.nic.in 21-02-1964 BJP (Chhattisgarh) Pradeep Majhi 22-02-1976 INC (Odisha) pradeep.majhi@sansad.nic.in DMK (Tamil Nadu) Shashi Tharoor 09-03-1956 INC (Kerala) office@tharoor.in Naveen Jindal 09-03-1970 Udayanraje P Bhonsle INC (Haryana) NCP (Maharashtra) Narahari Mahato 24-02-1966 udayanrajebhonsle@yahoo.com naveen.jindal@sansad.nic.in 10-03-1956 15-03-1956 15-03-1957 nama.kmm@gmail.com Rajya Sabha Members Feb 16, 2014 — Mar 15, 2014 A A Jinnah Bhalchandra Mungekar DMK (Tamil Nadu) INC (Nominated) aajinnah.mp@sansad.nic.in mungekar.b@sansad.nic.in Gyan Prakash Pilania Tarun Vijay BJP (Rajasthan) BJP (Uttarakhand) pilania.g@sansad.nic.in tarun.vijay@sansad.nic.in Khekiho Zhimomi Mohan Singh NPF (Nagaland) SP (Uttar Pradesh) k.zhimomi@sansad.nic.in mohan.singh@sansad.nic.in N Janardhana Reddy Ranbir Singh Parjapati INC (Andhra Pradesh) INLD (Haryana) 16-02-1941 02-03-1946 18-02-1932 19-02-1946 02-03-1956 04-03-1945 20-02-1935 04-03-1964 ranbir.prajapati@sansad.nic.in Sanjay Shamrao Dhotre AIFB (West Bengal) BJP (Maharashtra) Sanjay Bhoi BSP (Uttar Pradesh) 07-03-1949 INC (Odisha) Abhishek Manu Singhvi azadg@sansad.nic.in 26-02-1959 Virendra Kumar 27-02-1954 narahari.mahato@sansad.nic.in 11-03-1974 sanjaybhoi@hotmail.com BJP (Madhya Pradesh) vkumar@sansad.nic.in Gajanan Dharmshi Babar Kamlesh Balmiki 12-03-1967 Jugul Kishore Ghulam Nabi Azad 24-02-1959 INC (Jammu & Kashmir) 24-02-1959 Karan Singh INC (Rajasthan) 09-03-1931 a.singhvi@sansad.nic.in INC (NCT of Delhi) karansi@sansad.nic.in SP (Uttar Pradesh) Bimla Kashyap Sood M B Rajesh BJP (Himachal Pradesh) Barun Mukherji AITC (West Bengal) Makhansingh Solanki CPI (M) (Kerala) BJP (Madhya Pradesh) Sharifuddin Shariq AIFB (West Bengal) Rangasayee Ramakrishna 01-03-1943 SS (Maharashtra) gajananbabar@yahoo.in 01-03-1952 Ramen Deka 01-03-1954 BJP (Assam) ramenguwahati@yahoo.co.in 12-03-1971 mbrajesh85@yahoo.com 13-03-1935 J&KNC (Jammu and Kashmir) 26-02-1942 01-03-1933 barun.m@sansad.nic.in Derek O Brien 13-03-1961 derek.ob@sansad.nic.in 15-03-1934 BJP (Karnataka) Baju Ban Riyan 13-03-1941 Biren Singh Engti CPI (M) (Tripura) INC (Assam) Feroze Varun Gandhi 02-03-1945 Kapil Muni Karwariya 02-03-1967 BSP (Uttar Pradesh) krwariya.km@sansad.nic.in Krishna Tirath riyanb@sansad.nic.in 13-03-1980 BJP (Uttar Pradesh) Munisamy Thambidurai 15-03-1947 AIADMK (Tamil Nadu) 03-03-1955 SEND YOUR GREETINGS… Want to wish someone best of luck for an important assignment or send a bouquet to an official or MP on his/her birthday, anniversary or promotion, gfiles will do the needful. This service has specially been started only in Delhi. Contact us at hrd@gfilesindia.com *Conditions apply INC (Delhi) For the complete list, see www.gfilesindia.com 92 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 www.gfilesindia.com
  • 93. Tracking SS GARBYAL The 1977-batch IFS officer of the Union Territory cadre has been appointed Director General (Forests) and Special Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Forests. HC MEENA The 1976-batch IPS officer of the Rajasthan cadre has been appointed Secretary, Security, Cabinet Secretariat in Government of India. BK VERMA The 1976 batch IAS officer has been appointed State Information Commissioner in Bihar. SUDARSANAM SRINIVASAN For a complete list of appointments & retirements, see www.gfilesindia.com been appointed Additional Secretary and Financial Adviser, Department of Space in Government of India. RAJEEV KHER The 1980-batch IAS officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre, Special Secretary, Department of Commerce, has been appointed Secretary, Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry. OM PRAKASH The Director (Technical), WCL/CIL, has been selected for the post of Chairman and Managing Director, South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL) at a Public Enterprises Selection Board (PESB). The 1980-batch IAS officer of the Odisha cadre, Special Secretary and Financial Adviser, Department of Space, has been appointed Member (Finance), Atomic Energy/ Space/Earth Commissions. VIVEK KUMAR A VIJAYANAND The IRS IT officer has been appointed as Member of the Additional Bench of Settlement Commission, Chennai. The 1984 batch IRSME officer has been empanelled for the post of Joint Secretary or equivalent in Government of India. D DASGUPTA THE FOLLOWING ADDITIONAL JUDGES OF THE HIGH COURT OF KERALA HAVE BEEN APPOINTED AS JUDGES OF THE SAME HIGH COURT: Justice BABU MATHEW P JOSEPH, Justice AMBAZHAVELIL VELAYUDHAN PILLAI, RAMAKRISHNA PILLAI and Justice PANNIPUZHAYIL DIVAKARAN RAJAN. HARYANA RESHUFFLES IPS OFFICERS: AJAY SINGHAL has been appointed as new Commissioner of Police, Panchkula-Ambala, RAJBIR DESWAL was shifted to Telecom wing & RAHUL SHARMA is DCP, Ambala (Urban). HAMID AKHTAR has been appointed as AIG, Provisioning. SS CHHABRA Moving On: IAS officers retiring in February 2014 The 1993 batch IFS officer of the ManipurTripura cadre has been appointed Officeron-Special Duty in the Social Welfare department and as Chief Executive Officer of Manipur State Rural Road Development Agency (MSRRDA). ASSAM-MEGHALAYA MAHARASHTRA RAVINDRA KUMAR Rabendra Kumar Das (1993) Ajit Kumar Jain (1982) R K Gaikwad (1996) S G Malakolikar (1999) The Joint GM, TCIL has been selected for the post of Director (Finance), NEPA Limited at a Public Enterprises Selection Board (PESB). Rajen Habib Khwaja (1976) Prasanna Kumar Mohanty (1979) Prasanta Mahapatra (1980) MADHYA PRADESH JUSTICE APARESH KUMAR SINGH CHHATTISGARH MANIPUR-TRIPURA Narayan Singh (1977) Sunil Kumar (1979) S Sunderlal Singh (1993) The 1980-batch (IRS C&CE) officer, Joint Secretary, Department of Space, has ANDHRA PRADESH GUJARAT V Y Vyasa (1992) P H Shah (1997) Padamvir Singh (1977) The Additional Judge of the Jharkhand High Court has been appointed as Judge of the same High Court. JUSTICE KULDIP SINGH Dhanbir Singh Bains (1981) The Judge has been appointed Additional Judge of the High Court of Punjab & Haryana for a period of two years. UTTAR PRADESH LALMALSWMA PUNJAB Ajai Bhandari (1990) Ram Swarup Gupta (2000) Arun Kumar Misra (1976) Manoj Kumar (1982) Satyajit Thakur (1985) Shyam Lal Ii The 1983 batch IAS officer has been appointed as Principal Secretary, SC/ST/ OBC Minorities as well as MD, DSFDC in Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi. JAMMU & KASHMIR UNION TERRITORY Farooq Ahmed Factoo (1997) Vivek Rae (1978) V Sapchhunga DM SPOLIA HIMACHAL PRADESH KERALA L Radhakrishnan (1984) www.indianbuzz.com The 1979-batch IAS officer of the AGMUT cadre, Chief Secretary has been transferred and posted as Financial Commissioner with additional charge of CMD, DFC in Government of NCT of Delhi. gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 93
  • 94. Tracking HV GUJJAR The IRS IT officer has been posted as OSD in the office of CCIT (CCA), Delhi. KUMAR RAHUL The 2000-batch IAS officer of the Punjab cadre has been appointed General Manager (GM) of Food Corporation of India (FCI) in Chandigarh. SANJAY KUMAR SRIVASTAVA The 1980-batch IAS officer of the AGMUT cadre has been appointed Chief Secretary in Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi. VK SINHA The Chief General Manager, BCCL has taken over as Director (Technical), CMPDIL. IRS-IT OFFICERS SHIFTED: A K AGGRAWAL has been shifted to West Bengal CCA while V VINOD KUMAR was posted to US (V&L)-I, CBDT, New Delhi. For a complete list of appointments & retirements, see www.gfilesindia.com SANDEEP GARG The 1991-batch IAS officer of the Haryana cadre has been assigned additional charges of Director General, Social Justice & Empowerment and Secretary, Social Justice & Empowerment. K SREENIVASULU The 1994-batch IAS officer of the Sikkim cadre is now Joint Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development. VISHVAAJIT SAHAY The 1990-batch IDAS officer has taken over as new Joint Secretary, Heavy Industries in the Government of India. SAGAR PREET HOODA The 1977-batch IPS officer of the Union Territory cadre has been appointed Private Secretary to Minister of State for Home Affairs, Mullappally Ramachandran. RANJAN KHANNA The 1994-batch IRS C&CE officer has been appointed Private Secretary to the Minister for Communications and IT. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN SHIFTED IN HIMACHAL PRADESH: PARTHASARATHI MITRA has been appointed ACS, Home & Vigilance and Cooperation, ALI RAZA RIZVI will now be PS, Higher Education, Elementary Education and Information Technology and JOGINDER SINGH RANA is now posted as Managing Director, Agro Industries Limited. AK SINGH The 1984-batch IRSME officer has been empanelled for the post of Joint Secretary or equivalent in Government of India. ANMOL KUMAR The 1982-batch IFS officer of the Maharashtra cadre presently working as APCCF Personnel in Maharashtra has been appointed Director General, Forest Survey of India, Dehradun. AMIT KUMAR ROY THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN WEST BENGAL: M JOYOSHI DAS GUPTA has been appointed as OSD to Chief Secretary, DR VISHWANATH will now be Additional District Magistrate Darjeeling, R VIMALA is CEO, Siliguri Jalpaiguri Development Authority. Similarly, ARVIND KUMAR MEENA has been appointed as Additional District Magistrate, Murshidabad; R ARJUN as Additional District Magistrate, Paschim Midnapore and SHASHANK SETHI was posted as Joint Secretary, Chief Minister’s office. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN BIHAR: KP RAMAIAH has been appointed PS, SC-ST welfare department with additional charge of secretary, State Mahadalit commission while NARMADESHWAR LAL will be Tirhut Commissioner, SM RAJU (1991) is Saran commissioner. UPENDRA KUMAR has been appointed Kosi commissioner; ANIL KUMAR as commissioner of Munger division; SUBHASH SHARMA as PS, animal husbandry and fisheries resources department; JAIRAM LAL MEENA as agriculture development commissioner;. He was adviser, Bihar state planning board, with additional charge of additional commissioner, departmental inquiry; LIAN KUNGA as adviser, Bihar state planning board; B PRADHAN as principal secretary, tourism department; SUNIL KUMAR SINGH as mines commissioner cum principal secretary, mines and geology department with additional charge of MD, Bihar state mineral development corporation; SANJAY KUMAR as secretary, labour resources department with additional charge of CEO, skill development mission; SANJAY KUMAR SINGH as executive director of state health society with additional charge of secretary, health department; SANTOSH KUMAR MALL as MD, South Bihar Power Distribution Company Limited; CHITTRANJAN SINGH as cane commissioner; SARVANA as director, primary education; DHARMENDRA SINGH as director, agriculture, and CEO, finance department and IMAMUDDIN AHMAD, IRS (2001 batch), has been made Director, social welfare department as director. 94 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 The IRS Customs and Central Excise officer has been promoted to the grade of Chief Commissioner and posted as Chief Commissioner, CX, Coimbatore. P K MOHANTY The IRS Customs and Central Excise officer has been promoted to the grade of Chief Commissioner and appointed as DG, ICCE, New Delhi. BRIG AK SHORI The 1982-batch IPoS officer has been empanelled for the posts of Joint Secretary or equivalent in the Government of India. LT COL DKS CHAUHAN The 1982-batch IPoS officer has been empanelled for the posts of Joint Secretary or equivalent in the Government of India. RAJAT BANSAL The IRS IT officer has been appointed Joint Secretary, Revenue in the Government of India. SATISH KUMAR The CSS officer has been appointed Joint Secretary, Power, in the Government of India. www.gfilesindia.com
  • 95. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN JHARKHAND: SUDHIR PRASAD has been appointed as Development Commissioner with additional charge of DWSD, SAJAL CHAKRAVARTY will now be Additional Chief Secretary of Transport department and VISHNU KUMAR gets additional charge of Principal Secretary Tourism. MAST RAM MEENA has been given the additional charge of Secretary IPRD and Secretary Energy Department; SK SATPATHY gets additional charge of Principal Secretary Road Construction; RAJ BALA VERMA as PS, Rural Development Department with additional charge of Building Construction; ARUN gets additional charge of Secretary Mines & Geology Department; ARADHANA PATANAIK as Secretary Housing with additional charge of Additional Finance Commissioner; KK SOAN as Secretary Cooperative; HIMANI PANDEY as Secretary Industry department with additional charge of Commissioner Transport; PRAVEEN SHANKAR as Director SKIPA; EKHTESHAMUL HAQ as Divisional Commissioner Santhal Pargana; ASHOK KUMAR SHARMA was promoted on the post of Joint Election Commissioner; SUNIL KUMAR SINGH as Additional Member of Finance Commission; RATAN KUMAR as Secretary Civil Security with additional charge of Additional Chief Executive Officer JAP IT and RP SINHA was made as Secretary Excise & Prohibition Department with additional charge of Excise Commissioner and MD Beverage Corporation of Jharkhand. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN RAJASTHAN: T RAVIKANT has been appointed Secretary to Chief Minister, VIKAS SITARAMJI BHALE will now be Director, Middle Education and ex-officio State Project Director, National Middle Education campaign, Bikaner and OMKAR SINGH is Special Secretary, Planning. GIRIRAJ SINGH KUSHWAH has been appointed Collector and District Magistrate; KRISHNA KUNAL as Collector, Jaipur; NEERAJ KUMAR PAWAN as Additional Mission Director, National Health Mission and Director, IIC and Joint Secretary, Medical and Health; RAVI KUMAR SURPUR as Collector, Bhilwara and VINA PRADHAN was made Collector, Nagore. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN KARNATAKA: NAVEEN RAJ SINGH has been appointed Commissioner, Employment & Training while SHAMLA IQBAL will now be Additional Mission Director, SAKALA and SALMA K FAHIM is Director, Karnataka Rural Water Supply & Sanitation Agency & Deputy Secretary, RD & PR. SS NAKUL has been appointed Director, Information Technology & BioTechnology; N MANJUSHREE as CEO, Zilla Panchayat, Udupi and R VINOTH PRIYA was posted as CEO, Zilla Panchayat, Kolar. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN HIMACHAL PRADESH: VINEET CHAWDHRY has been assigned an additional charge of ACS, I & PH and Horticulture while ALI RAZA RIZVI will be Principal Secretary, Home & vigilance and Information Technology, ONKAR CHAND SHARMA gets additional charge of MD, HP Agro Packaging India Ltd. Besides, JOGINDER SINGH RANA has been appointed MD, HP Minorities Development Corporation Ltd and SS GULERIA is Special Secretary, Training & Foreign Assignment. THE FOLLOWING IAS OFFICERS HAVE BEEN TRANSFERRED AND POSTED AT DIFFERENT PLACES IN TRIPURA: PARSHANT KUMAR GOYAL has been posted as Collector, Dhalai district, Ambassa, ABHISHEK SINGH will now be Collector West Tripura district Agartala and MILIND DHARMARAO RAMTEKE is Collector, Sepahijala district, Bishramganj. KD CHOUDHARY has been appointed Commissioner of Taxes, Tripura; VIKAS SINGH as CEO, Agartala Municipal Council; RATHOD SANDEEP REWAJI as Collector, North Tripura district, DHARMANAGAR AND MAHATME SANDEP NAMDEVO was made Mission Director, NRHM, Agartala. www.indianbuzz.com N DILIP KUMAR The 1987-batch IPS officer of the AGMUT cadre has been appointed Advisor to the Arvind Kejriwal, Chief Minister of Delhi. MM KUTTY The 1985-batch IAS officer of the Union Territory cadre, former Principal Secretary to Sheila Dixit has been appointed Secretary, Finance in Delhi Government. BALVINDER KUMAR The 1981-batch IAS officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre has been appointed Vice Chairman of Delhi Development Authority. SUNDARI SUBRAMANIAM PUJARI The 1980-batch IDES officer has been appointed Chief Vigilance Officer, Air India, Delhi. AK PATERIYA The 1986-batch IPS officer has been posted as OSD MP Govt in the Madhya Pradesh Bhawan, Delhi. ARUNA BAHUGUNA The 1979-batch IPS officer of the Andhra Pradesh cadre has been appointed Director of the National Police Academy, Hyderabad. HANS RAJ SHARMA The IAS officer of the Himachal Pradesh cadre has been appointed Director, Health Safety & Regulations in Himachal Pradesh. SANJIV KUMAR The 1992-batch IAS officer of the AGMUT cadre has been assigned an additional charge of MD, DT&TDC, in Delhi Government. DINESH KUMAR The 2004-batch IAS officer of the Nagaland cadre is joining as Director in the Ministry of Shipping. DIPAK KUMAR GUPTA The 1995-batch C&CE officer has been appointed as OSD to Member (Customs) in Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC). RV CHANDRAVADAN The 1993-batch IAS officer of the Andhra Pradesh cadre has been appointed Commissioner, Employment & Training in Andhra Pradesh. gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 95
  • 96. PERSPECTIVE shivratri sadhguru O N February 27 this year is Mahashivratri, a night of great spiritual significance with a deep scientific rationale. At the Isha Yoga Center in Coimbatore, this is a grand celebration – a night of music, dance, meditation and rapture. When I say ‘spiritual’, I am not referring to anything other-worldly. This is not about subscribing to a belief system, an ideology or a philosophy. Nor is this some cultural antic or about joining a Shiva fan club. What makes this night so significant? There are 12 Shivratris in a year. The 14th day of every month, the day before the no-moon, is called Shivratri. Of all these Shivratris, the one that appears in the lunar month of Magha, around February-March, is called Maha-shivratri. On this day, in the northern hemisphere, there is a natural upsurge of energies in the human system. Every human being can make use of this if he keeps his spine erect. In evolutionary development, a significant step is the shift from invertebrate to vertebrate. Another important step is the movement of the spine from the horizontal to the vertical position. As human beings, we are the only species to have graduated to the level of an erect spine. And on this day when planetary positions are such that there is a natural upsurge of energies, keeping the spine vertical all night has immense benefits – not just for spiritual seekers but also for those seeking material success. Culturally, the festival means different things to different people. Ascetics see this as the night when Shiva became absolutely still and attained the peak of his perception. Householders see this as the night when Shiva married Parvati. The ambitious see it as the night when Shiva vanquished all his enemies. But this festival was essentially created so 96 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 Channel the energy we could make use of this natural planetary assistance to move towards a higher possibility within ourselves. If you exist here as mere physicality, you will know only two dimensions of life: self-preservation and procreation. These are essential, but never enough. A human being is always longing to be more than who he is right now. There is a difference between ‘knowledge’ and ‘knowing’. Knowledge is information gathered in bits and pieces. If you pass a flowering plant and you know the chemistry of its fragrance, that is one dimension of knowledge. If you know the experience and ecstasy of that fragrance, that is another dimension of knowledge. But if you become the fragrance, that is true knowing. The human struggle is just this: you are unwilling to shake off the bits and pieces of knowledge you have acquired, because these give you some sense of security and identity. For a tiny bit of knowledge, you are giving up the cosmos! Science tells us existence is energy. It could be physical, mental, emotional, or it could be dark energy. Scientists spoke earlier of ‘dark matter’, but recently they have started saying that the basis of everything is ‘dark energy’, which is in constant collaboration with dark matter. Way back in history, this culture spoke of ‘dark energy’ too. This is not new for anyone who has looked within himself. The way the individual is made is the way the cosmos is made. Both come from the same manufacturing unit. It is in the lap of that darkness that everything is born. We called this dark energy ‘Shi-va’, or ‘that which is not’. So, Mahashivratri is the darkest night of the year in the northern hemisphere. And only those who consciously approach this darkness will see light. Every human being has a choice: to exist here just as a piece of creation or to exist here as the source of creation. The source is always approachable, but it is much more approachable on this particular day. Grace is not something that is turned on and off, but on this night, transmission lines function that much better, so it is a tremendous opportunity to become receptive. And being receptive to grace is being receptive to life and the very source of life. g Sadhguru, a yogi, is a visionary, humanitarian and a prominent spiritual leader (www.ishafoundation.org) www.gfilesindia.com
  • 97. ...by the way Craft and graft R Scams always leave a trail D eepak Mohan Spolia, a 1976 batch IAS of AGMUT cadre and former Chief Secretary of Delhi, was hopeful that he would be retained by the newly elected Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. Kejriwal did not have any personal grudge against him. But whenever the seat of power changes, bureaucrats, who have remained on the fence, promptly rush to brief the new incumbent. The same happened in Delhi Secretariat when Kejriwal joined; he was briefed about the political environment of the bureaucracy in Delhi Secretariat. There was an inquiry pending against both Chief Secretaries— Spolia and PK Tripathi—in the multi-crore transport scam of outsourcing fitness tests of commercial vehicles. A request was made by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to the Delhi Government’s vigilance department earlier, seeking approval to prosecute several serving government officials, including the then transport commissioner RK Verma. The Shiela Dikshit government was apparently shielding the officers and not sanctioning permission to investigating agencies. The moment Kejriwal was informed about the scam, he decided on a change and brought in Sanjay Kumar Srivastava, a 1980 batch IAS officer of AGMUT cadre. It is to be seen whether Kejriwal will give the go-ahead to the investigative agencies to nab the alleged scamsters or not. g www.indianbuzz.com P Singh a 1976 batch IAS officer of the Andhra Pradesh cadre and Chairman, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), is known for his hard work and honesty. A well-known admirer of the Prime Minister in the bureaucracy, he is a multi-faceted personality and writes poems and songs that can be viewed on youtube. NHAI was in mess before he joined as Chairman and Managing Director. Today, officials and contractors are terrified of the way he has evolved a mechanism to remove corruption. The moment he learns that any form of graft has changed hands in a certain project, Singh calls both the contractor and the officer into his office. It is a peculiar situation where the bribe giver and taker are both sitting in the chairman’s room. He bluntly asks both parties, “How much money has changed hands?” Both the parties sitting across can’t state the wrong facts. The officers, who have taken the graft have to return the money to the contractors and if anyone tries to play any tricks with Singh, he simply says that the case will be sent to the CBI. Naturally, everybody falls in line. But, if you are thinking the NHAI is corruption free now, you are mistaken. Complaints are pouring into the CMD’s office from across the country regarding the corrupt practices of both officers and contractors. But, action seems to be slow. Is there something cooking at the top? Watch this space for more… g gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 97
  • 98. ...by the way Eyes on World Bank post E Freedom to air T he expert committee on Prasar Bharati, under the chairmanship of Sam Pitroda, has advised that Prasar Bharati should have administrative and financial autonomy. The committee sought the advice of approximately 100 people who were designated as advisors to the committee. So far so good. But, maybe Mr Pitroda is not aware that Prasar Bharati, which employs 32,500 people, already has absolute administrative and financial autonomy. The Prasar Bharati Act 1990 was brought in to unshackle Doordarshan and Radio from the bureaucratic whims of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting and show to the world that the public broadcaster of India is autonomous, both administratively and financially. The Chairman of Prasar Bharati Board Mrs Mrinal Pande, CEO Jawhar Sircar, Director-General Doordarshan Tripurari Saran and Director News S M Khan are all autonomous, administratively and financially. They work cohesively and coherently with complete autonomy where nobody listens to anybody. Mrinal Pande desires to run Doordarshan and AIR in her own way but is not able to do as nobody follows her advice. CEO Sircar is completely astonished in the way he is surrounded by officials and board members. Tripurari Saran’s term is ending. Khan is handling News. Manish Tiwari, Minister of Information & Broadcasting, has all intentions of improving the public broadcasting system for the better but he is running out of time as the Lok Sabha elections loom large. Meanwhile, the babu in the I&B Ministry does not know what to do with Doordarshan, as Pitroda talks autonomy but is not able to outline how this edifice can be financially viable and can be run without spoon feeding by the government. In such a scenario, one thing is sure - till the elections get over, Doordarshan and AIR are completely free and autonomous! g 98 gfiles inside the government vol. 7, issue 11 | February 2014 verybody knows how coveted posts are filled in the government, but the Department of Personnel and Training has to still complete all the formalities. It is learnt that the Government of India is looking for an Advisor to World Bank Executive Director Mukesh N Prasad. DoPT has issued a circular to State chief secretaries and Union secretaries of the cadre controlling ministries to nominate names of suitable officers of deputy secretary or director ranks. DPS Sandhu, an Indian Railway Traffic Service officer of 1987 batch is the outgoing officer. Sandhu used to earlier work in the Prime Minister’s Office. Another Advisor in the World Bank, Anuradha Thakur, an IAS officer of 1994 batch of Himachal cadre, is on her way back after completing her term in March 2014. Before joining the World Bank, she served as Deputy Secretary and Director in the Department of Economic Affairs. Two current senior advisors to the ED in the Bank are Manoj Pant, former private secretary to ex-Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and former PMO official LK Atheeq. Whereas Pant assists Prasad on India, Atheeq helps him on Sri Lanka matters. Sandhu assists on issues related to Bhutan. The top appointments of the World Bank remain within the four walls of the Finance Ministry but to appear fair and transparent, the DoPT has to issue the circular. Still, if one believes there is a genuine selection process in the Ministry, one must apply if he/she is under 54 years of age and has completed two years under central staffing system and has experience to show in areas of infrastructure development, international trade, public finance and externally aided projects. Good luck! g ILLUSTRATIONS: ARUNA www.gfilesindia.com