Close on the heels of CBI winding up disproportionate asset case against her, the Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta has given a clean chit to BSP chief Mayawati in the alleged Noida farmhouse scam, saying the rules that were purported to have been violated were not in “existence.”
On August 31, Uttar Pradesh government had ordered a probe by the Lokayukta N.K. Mehrotra in the farmhouse allotment after receiving complaints of irregularities. The then Noida Authority chairman Rakesh Bahadur had raised suspicion of a scam in his probe.
In his report sent to Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Tuesday, the Lokayukta said that in the Master Plan of Noida, the farm house scheme was found permissible and no corruption or irregularity was found in the allotment process.
Mr. Mehrotra said the allegations of violation of any rule or act in the farmhouse allotment were found “baseless as the rules that were purported to have violated were not in the existence.”
“Industrial authorities like Noida were constituted for planned development of industrial area and not for earning profit,” the Lokayukta said, adding that in the report of the then chairman, assessment of the alleged loss was made on the basis of land rates, which the records of accounts department do not confirm.
He said that in view of the Supreme Court order regarding fixing land rate for farmhouse, there was no financial loss to the authority therefore “terming it as a scam was completely wrong.”
“After formation of Noida, the process of plot allotment on the basis of interview had been followed in which the selection committee had the right of using its discretion,” he said.
Mr. Mehrotra said that similar process was adopted in the allotment of 10,000 square feet farmhouse each in Noida.
The Lokayukta said even after notices were issued to over 146 applicants, none of those who levelled allegations of corruption against the then Chief Minister Mayawati appeared to present any evidence.
In such a situation, allegations against Ms. Mayawati were not proved, he said.
On October 8, CBI had closed its probe in the alleged disproportionate assets case against the BSP chief after receiving legal opinion on the Supreme Court orders on the issue.
The Lokayukta said that in his report sent to the chief minister, he has recommended to re-examine files and applications of all allottees to ensure that they have not committed any fraud, made false statement or presented wrong facts.
He said that in case of irregularity the allotment should be reconsidered and a report be presented in three months.
Mr. Mehrotra said that he has recommended to make required amendments in the discretionary powers of the selection committee in allotment, so that it could not be misused.