Santosh Singh in Bhopal, SNS
Feb. 22. — What can be bought for a single rupee? The best of lands! Well, that was the “token amount” the BJP and its sister organisations have paid to bag some of the best pieces of prime lands in Bhopal.
Call it a “largesse” of the Shivraj Singh Chauhan-led BJP government or a “blatant abuse of power”, the three beneficiaries of the “government land for Re 1” policy have been the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Sant Sri Aasaram Ashram Yoga Vedanta Seva Samiti and Kushabhau Thakre Smiriti Nyas.
The second beneficiary, however, is not directly linked to the BJP. But the state government, allegedly in its bid to please its constituency, allotted a 4.04-acre plot to Sant Sri Aasaram Ashram Yoga Vendanta Seva Samiti, Gandhi Nagar.
The Congress, the main Opposition party in Madhya Pradesh, however, was not in the know of things till the government put it in black and white in its Budget Estimates 2006-07 (Part-V, Page-38). Charged up now after the revelation, a livid Congress is set to raise the matter during the ongoing Assembly session.
The BJP has no plausible excuse to offer other than the one that it had not tampered with any procedure in the allotment of the pieces of land. BJP spokesman Mr Bijesh Lunawat said he was “not competent enough” to comment on the matter.
Senior party leader Mr Kailash Joshi and the new state BJP chief, Mr Satyanarayan Jatiya, were not available for comments. While it is too early to call the allotment illegal, the Congress has started linking it with the alleged illegal land allotments made during the regime of the BJP’s Sunderlal Patwa government.