CHANDIGARH 5 August. Qila Raipur MLA Jassi Khangura today queried whether the Badal family had paid the market rate for their 18 acres in Gurgaon on which they have built The Trident and The Oberoi hotels? Allotted to the Badals by the late Ch. Devi Lal in 1990 for a pittance today the land is worth at least Rs.2700 crores and properties worth Rs.1500 crores have been built thereon. The MLA questioned why, when it comes to land, the Badals are quick to seek personal financial advantage but when it comes to the farmers of Dist. Mansa the Badals are only too happy to impoverish, undermine, bludgeon and arrest the poor farmers. Khangura added that most Governments nearing the end of their term would not have taken the political risk that the Akalis have with the land acquisition in Mansa District and would simply have left the matter for the next administration to deal with. Instead the Badals dogmatic promotion of the India Bulls power project has created general mayhem and has lead to the arrest, intimidation and beating of hundreds of farmers, as well as the shameful and tragic murder of one farmer by police personnel. Jassi stated that it is a matter of extreme concern that the Badals have failed to justify why they are pushing so aggressively for the acquisition of the Mansa land for India Bulls when so many other power projects portrayed by the Governments as showcase projects are actually languishing for one reason or another.
Jassi questioned the haste of the Government in acquiring land for the India Bulls project when the Punjab Government has not even entered into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), where no coal linkage has been secured and where no environmental clearance has been obtained from the Union Government. Jassi added should the priority not be the Gidderbha project where an MOU is in place, where a PPA has been signed and where union environmental clearances are in place? He asked Why do you now have cold feet about the Gidderbha project which is far ahead of the India Bulls project in planning? Is it just because you do not wish for your nephew Manpreet Badal to take any credit for the Gidderbha project?
The Qila Raipur MLA queried what has been the upside for the family that has allowed them to take this political risk for a project that has no official sanction other than the MOU? Khangura stated that until the Chief Minister is able to justify the urge for acquisition of the Mansa land serious suspicions will remain and the stench of corruption regarding this deal will hover above the ruling family.