KARNATAKA

Mahima for probe into housing co-ops.

Special Correspondent

Bangalore: Mahima Patel, president of the Swarna Yuga party, has alleged that there is a Rs. 20,000-crore scam in house-building cooperative societies and demanded a thorough inquiry into it.

Speaking to reporters here on Saturday, Mr. Patel said there had been countless violations of the Karnataka Cooperative Societies Act, 1959, and sites had been allotted for big commercial ventures with an eye on profit. According to the bylaws, sites can be allotted only for housing for bona fide members of a society.

Mr. Patel said cooperative societies had entered into “unholy alliances” with real estate agents and developers, with the connivance of bureaucrats, and granted sites to people. The Government, he alleged, had looked the other way and failed to punish the violators. On many occasions societies, which had been declared “bogus” by inquiry reports on court procedures, were helped by the Government to acquire land, he added.

Citing an example, he said 175 sites were registered in housing societies in the name of a person who had contested the previous Assembly elections on the BJP ticket.

Mr. Patel said his party had sought documents from the Department of Cooperatives on some of these violations, but the department had not provided them even after a lapse of 70 days. The party was considering legal options in this regard, he said.

No plans yet

Asked if he planned to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections, Mr. Patel said that he had “no concrete plans as of now” and would wait and see if any party came forward to form an alliance with the Swarna Yuga.

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