Maharashtra: Opposition seeks CM Eknath Shinde ouster for allotting Rs 83 crore land for Rs 2 crore | Nagpur News – Times of India


NAGPUR: The opposition on Tuesday demanded the resignation of chief minister Eknath Shinde for ordering the Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT) to lease out and allot 19,331.2 sq m of land meant for housing for the poor to 16 persons in Nagpur during his tenure as urban development minister in the then Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.
After the opposition created a ruckus over the matter, the house was adjourned. MVA netas, led by former deputy CM Ajit Pawar and state Congress president Nana Patole, staged a walkout from the legislative assembly accusing Shinde of allotting the land worth Rs 83 crore for just Rs 2 crore. “Shinde as urban development minister in 2021 had allegedly indulged in ‘bhukhand cha shreekhand’ (kickbacks in the land allotment),” the opposition alleged.
A PIL related to the land is pending in the Nagpur bench of Bombay high court. Before the Opposition walkout, Shinde declared in the lower house that he had cancelled the land allotment, claiming that NIT and urban development department officials had not informed him about the court case.
Taking cognizance of a series of reports in TOI over the matter, the HC had on December 14 ordered the authorities to maintain status quo.
Based on a CAG report exposing irregularities by NIT in allotment of acquired lands and public utility lands, activist Anil Wadpalliwar had filed a writ petition in the HC in 2004. In the same petition, he had challenged proposed regularization of layout comprising the land. The HC-appointed Gilani committee had observed violations and loss to urban poor. The HC had appointed advocate Parchure as amicus curiae.
Shinde said when he had ordered land lease to 16 persons, he was “not informed by NIT about the constitution of a panel under retired judge M N Gilani”. “It was brought to my notice only on December 14 after HC’s status quo. When I gave the land allotment order, all work was online due to the pandemic. I have also received many letters from the local MLAs, including Nitin Raut, for land allotment,” he said, and claimed he had not indulged in any wrongdoing.
While raising slogans against the government on the steps of the Vidhan Bhavan, Patole said, “How can he (Shinde) stay in office after committing such a huge land scam and court’s observations against him? During the MVA government, the then home minister Anil Deshmukh and forest minister Sanjay Rathod had to resign after allegations were made against them.”


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