“Meerut divisional commissioner Surendra Singh was supposed to meet the officials about the probe. He visited Ghaziabad on Wednesday morning and returned from Hindon terminal. We expect his visit sometime next week,” said a GDA official.
The GDA had launched the housing scheme in 1998, in which 1,553 plots of 200sqm, 150sqm, 112sqm and 90sqm were carved out and put up for sale. In the case of 139 of these plots, people defaulted on payment of EMIs, leading to cancellation of allotment. The officials, in connivance with middlemen and property dealers, allegedly got the cancelled plots restored between 2005 and 2007. They lured the allottees with a paltry amount and got the land transferred in their own names.
The plots were restored at a sector rate that was prevailing in 1998, which was between Rs 2,575 per sqm and Rs 2,820 per sqm. But as per law, they should have been restored to allottees at the sector rate prevailing at that point in time, i.e., between 2005 and 2007, or 75% of the market value or whichever was higher. The sector rate between 2005 and 2007 was Rs 12,000 per sqm. This resulted in loss to the state exchequer of about Rs 3 crore and an additional Rs 30 lakh in stamp duty.
In 2011, the then GMC councillor Rajendra Tyagi had filed a petition in the Allahabad HC, following which the court directed the Moradabad range commissioner to probe the matter. The GDA also conducted an internal inquiry and indicted 37 officials, including junior engineers, assistant engineers and executive engineers under whose watch the alleged irregularities took place. In December 2017, it lodged FIRs against erring officials. This was followed by an independent inquiry by the Moradabad range commissioner. However, no action was taken against any of the accused.