Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Apr 10:
Acting tough Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) has issued notices to six senior bureaucrats to appear before it in person in connection with allotment of multiple flats/plots under the discretionary quota (DQ) failing which decision will be taken ex parte as per provisions of the law.
Sources in the BDA said that notices have been served to six IAS officers Suresh Mohapatra, Pradeep Jena, Vishal Dev, Raj Kumar Sharma, Prashant Nayak and Satyabrat Sahu to appear in person before the Odisha Development Authority (ODA) Court of the BDA along with relevant documents pertaining to the allotments failing which decision will be taken ex parte as per provisions of the relevant law.
BDA had earlier served show cause notices to these senior officers as to explain as to why allotments of flats/plots made to them under the discretionary quota will not be cancelled.
“ODA court will conduct hearings and examine the cases as per relevant provisions of the law. Anyone whose name figures in the task force report will be tried and heard by the court. The department will take appropriate action as per provisions of the law, there are no two ways on this,” said Housing and Urban Development Minister Puspendra Singhdeo to reporters.
It may be recalled here that the state government had formed a task force headed by then Additional Chief Secretary Taradatt to probe allotment of flats/plots by BDA, Cuttack Development Authority (CDA) and Odisha State Housing Board (OSHB) under the discretionary quota.
The task force had submitted its report to the government recommending cancellation of 1791 allotments of plots/flats made after January 1, 1995, under DQ. The recommendations made in the task force report were accepted by the state Cabinet in November 2014. Out of the 1791 allotments, 803 were allotted by the BDA, 921 by CDA and 67 by OSHB.
The task force report had made it clear that the state government had allotted land and flats to influential persons at its whim and without any criteria or norms. Even the General Administration (GA) department, which is directly under the Chief Minister’s control, had indulged in the illegal acts for nearly 20 years since 1995.
The report had further stated that Ministers had used the DQ like kings and landlords as if government land in Cuttack and Bhubaneswar were their own properties. In stark violation of the DQ rules, these Ministers, instead of allotting government lands to the deserving, had allotted these lands to the rich and influential persons.