HC sets deadline for govt over DIAL land allotted at 'throw-away' rate

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SummaryGovt gave away 190 acres of land for Rs 3.25 lakh/acre against market price of Rs 100 cr/acre.

The Centre was granted two weeks more time to submit to the Delhi High Court the documents relating to the alleged allotment of 190 acres of IGI Airport land to private consortium DIAL at a “throw-away” price.

A Bench of Chief Justice D Murugesan and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw granted time to the government after Additional Solicitor General A S Chandhiok said the matter has been referred to a parliamentary panel as the CAG audited the land allotment and said huge loss has been caused to the exchequer.

“The matter is pending before a parliamentary committee, which is looking into the issue,” said the ASJ, while seeking more time to file the documents.

The court was hearing a petition filed by NGO Youth Against Corruption, which has sought a thorough probe into the IGI Airport land allotment to DIAL.

Petitioner counsel M N Krishnamani pleaded with the court against disposing the matter saying “The Parliamentary panel cannot consider the criminal aspect of the issue which is to be dealt with by the CBI for which the court can pass an order.”

The Bench earlier had sought the government's explanation to the allegation in the petition, filed through counsel Vikramjit Banerjee and Saurav Shamsherry.

As per the petition, the government had given away 190 acres of prime land and assets to DIAL at a throw-away price of Rs 3.25 lakh per acre against the market price of Rs 100 crore per acre.

The petition sought quashing of the government's decision on land allotment to private airport operator.

“This petition seeks a thorough probe in this matter by the CBI and criminal proceedings against the guilty. This decision has caused substantial revenue loss to the government and corresponding gain to the private parties,” said the plea.

“The private partners in DIAL have made just Rs 1,813 crore of investment out of total investment of Rs 12,857 crore for Delhi airport project. By just investing Rs 1,813 crore, GMR now owns 4,700 acre of land in the most prime location of India. State largesses has been passed into the private hands virtually free,” the petition added.

The NGO's counsel had earlier argued that

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