Chautala’s benami land in Kullu-Manali to vest in state

Kullu: Deputy commissioner BM Nanda has ordered vested of two benami properties in Kullu and Manali with the state.

The two properties, estimated at over Rs 11 crore, are said to be owned by Ajay Chautala, grandson of late deputy prime minister Devi Lal.

Evoking section 118 of HP Land Reforms and Tenancy Act 1972 that prohibits non-residents of the state to buy land in Himachal with the approval of the government, Nanta let Hill Post know, “both properties would be vested with the state as they were bought in violation of state land laws.”

One of the properties is said to be an hotel Regent Holiday Home in Manali held under benami ownership and the other property is a 12 bigha land piece located opposite the Bhuntar airport in Kullu.

The ‘jamavandi’ of the prime land piece is believed to have been executed in the year 1978-79.

Surprisingly the case has been pending with the deputy commissioners court for the past 14 years as the benami transaction is said to have been detected in 1997.

A media report quoted the counsel for Chautalas saying that the deputy commissioners order would be challenged in the divisional commissioners court.

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