Ruckus in Himachal assembly over Priyanka’s land deal

September 4th, 2008 - 7:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, Sep 4 (IANS) The Himachal Pradesh assembly Thursday saw heated exchanges between some legislators of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the opposition Congress over the allotment of land to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s daughter Priyanka Vadra in the hill state.The matter came up during question hour when Independent legislator Rakesh Pathania asked how many non-Himachalis were allowed to purchase land in the state from April 1, 2004, to Dec 31, 2007.

Public Works Minister Thakur Gulab Singh replied that 1,479 people were given permission to buy land in the state during this period.

Pathania pointed out two people from outside the state were allotted land in Shimla - one in the picturesque Jakhu hills and another in the high-security zone of Charabra, where Rashtrapati Nivas is located.

This angered the Congress legislators who stood up and disrupted the proceedings. During the ruckus, a legislator from the opposition benches said: “(Former prime minister) Atal Bihari Vajpayee too has a house (in the state).”

Gulab Singh said Vadra was given permission to purchase four bighas and five biswas of land as per the government rules and regulations.

Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal added: “It is a matter of prestige for the state if a known figure purchases land or property here.”

He also clarified: “Vajpayee has no house in the state.”

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