Khemka to be chargesheeted

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CANCELLATION OF VADRA-DLF LAND MUTATION

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh,September 27
Cancelling the mutation of land between AICC president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law and realty major DLF in Gurgaon is set to cost whistleblower IAS officer Ashok Khemka dear with the Haryana Government deciding to chargesheet him for alleged administrative misconduct.

With Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda giving approval for chargesheeting Khemka, the stage is set for the issue of a chargesheet to the officer by next week, sources said here today.

Earlier, Chief Secretary PK Chaudhery had compiled comments from the administrative branch and sent them to Hooda, who, in turn, approved the action against Khemka. The officer is to be chargesheeted for penalty under Rule 8 of the All-India Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules.

However, Khemka told reporters that as he was yet to receive the chargesheet, he could not comment upon it.

The sources said the IAS officer had been held liable for alleged administrative misconduct for overstepping his jurisdiction in passing orders to cancel the mutation of 3.5 acre land in Gurgaon’s Shikohpur village. The land was sold by Vadra to DLF.

After being transferred on October 11, 2012, from the post of Director-General, Consolidation of Holdings (DGH) and Inspector-General, Registration, Khemka had on October 12 and 15 last year ordered an inquiry into the alleged undervaluation of land owned by Vadra or his companies in Gurgaon, Faridabad, Palwal and Mewat and set aside the mutation of the 3.5 acre land in Shikohpur.

Besides, Khemka has also been held liable for public criticism of actions and policies of the state government.

The Haryana Government’s committee of three senior officers, set up to probe Khemka’s orders, had later found Khemka’s order to be inappropriate and without jurisdiction.

The penalties include reduction to a lower stage in the time scale of pay for a specific period, reduction to a lower grade or post which shall ordinarily be a bar to promotion, compulsory retirement and removal from service which shall not be a disqualification for future employment under government, sources said.

Fate of cancelled mutation

While the Hooda Government is allegedly putting pressure on Khemka by ordering a vigilance probe and approving the issue of a chargesheet, the mutation of the Shikohpur land deal continues to be cancelled nearly one year after Khemka’s order. Since Khemka’s order as the Director-General Consolidation of Holdings (DGH) and Inspector-General, Registration, was quasi-judicial in nature, only the Punjab and Haryana High Court was competent to adjudicate on the order. Neither Vadra nor DLF has so far moved the court to set aside Khemka’s order.

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