KARNATAKA

Vyalikaval society sold land for IT Park

The alleged irregularities of the Vyalikaval House Building Cooperative Society did not stop with the sale of land in bulk to non-members, both individuals and private developers, for construction of luxury apartments.

It now emerges that the society land was also purchased by Manyata Promoters Ltd. for the formation of the Manyata Tech Park on Nagawara Road, which has offices of some of the most prominent multinational IT companies.

This land, purchased with members' hard earned money, was allotted to the society at a subsidy by the government in two parts — one on August 6, 1988 and another on November 23, 1992.

A sale deed made available to The Hindu by a whistleblower shows that on December 19, 2003, Manyata purchased the southern portion of site number nine in Kasaba Hobli of Nagawara measuring 43,560.75 sq ft. The plot was purchased for Rs. 43,60,000, or around Rs. 100 per square foot. The going rate for land in the vicinity at that time was over Rs. 1,500 per sq ft, according to some realtors in the area.

On the same day another sale deed for an adjoining plot (northern portion of site number nine) measuring 21,796.87 sq ft was executed in favour of B.G. Channappa. He purchased it for Rs. 21,79,700, or about Rs. 100 per sq ft.

Mr. Channappa is known to be a close associate of the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa. He is the co- accused in a land grab case pending before the Lokayukta Court against Mr. Yeddyurappa as well as his sons and son-in-law.

The allegation in that court case is that Mr. Channappa purchased land from the Vyalikaval society and allegedly got BDA officials to give him permission to amalgamate a public road with his property. He later sold the land to Davalagiri Properties and Developers Private Ltd., owned by Mr. Yeddyurappa's sons and son-in-law.

It is, perhaps, no coincidence that all these three plots are adjoining one another.

The sale deeds pertaining to site number nine (South and North) show that the Vyalikaal society entered into a joint development agreement with Sree Shakti Promoters and Developers on January 16, 2002 for layout formation on 164.26 acres.

As per the agreement the society sold 50 per cent of land to the developer in violation of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 and the Cooperative Societies Act 1959, which specifies that a cooperative society land should be sold only to members.

In fact, even the joint development agreement, which itself is in violation of the law, states that the developer shall sell its share to members of the society.

Evidently a technology park cannot be a member of a housing society.

Reddy Veeranna, chairman and managing director, Manyata Promoters Ltd., was not available for comment. Speaking on his behalf, Dayanand Poojary said: “We bought our land from the share that the developer got through the joint development agreement.”

Mr. Channappa, who was also a partner in Sree Shakti Developers, said: “I don't know much. We did whatever is required by law. I took my share. It was the job of the society to allot plots to members.”