Real Estate major DLF Ltd has vehemently denied a report in Times Now that said that the company had been allotted 23 acres of land 3.5 km away from the Parliament of India at a throwaway price.
The report, aired last night by the news channel, had claimed that even the Prime Minister’s office had objected to the handing over of the sensitive spot to a DLF subsidiary, reportedly for 65 crore (about $10.5 mln). But the objections from various corners were overruled for the allotment, the channel said.
“The Company completely and vehemently denies these allegations. The allegations made are completely at variance with the facts, are false and baseless,” DLF has been quoted as saying in a statement sent out by Fortuna PR, the company’s public relations agency.
“The requisite approvals have been sought pursuant to court directions obtained after protracted litigation and by strictly following due process in this regard,” it said.
The channel had raised questions about why the government had apparently shown a lot of interest in allotting the property, which according to the channel is worth Rs 10,000 crore, to Edward Keventer (Successors) Pvt. Ltd. (EKSPL), a subsidiary of DLF.
“The Company wishes to reiterate that it conducts its business in strict compliance with all the applicable laws of the land,” DLF said.
“It is unfortunate that the story was aired without the channel contacting the Company to ascertain the true facts,” it added.
In a separate story, the Indian Express has said that the Central Bureau of Investigation is looking into the deal.
“Last November, the CBI registered a preliminary enquiry (PE) against officials of the urban development (UD) ministry for allegedly favouring DLF, giving it permission to construct the building. The PE was registered following a reference from the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), which received a complaint,” the newspaper said.
“In 1992, the erstwhile Edward Keventer (Successors) Private Ltd (EKSPL), holding perpetual lease for dairy farming since 1942, sought land use conversion (for the project). The request was turned down in 2002. In the meantime, DLF took over management of EKSPL,” the paper said.