On plots allotted, Bhushans have high standards for others

Anna-Shanti Bhushan

When it comes to individuals getting land allotted from the government much below market rates and without any lottery or auction, the Bhushans have always claimed to hold high standards of probity — for others.

The Indian Express reported today how Shanti Bhushan and son Jayant Bhushan applied and got two 10,000 square metre Noida farmhouse plots from the Mayawati government via a process they themselves go on to question.

But on the website of Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Judicial Reforms (CJAR), an NGO of which Shanti Bhushan is a patron and son Prashant the convenor, are documents alleging corruption against two former Chief Justices of India and one former High Court Chief Justice for allegedly receiving land from the government.

Consider:

Ex-CJI K G Balakrishnan: As recently as April 4, the CJAR wrote to the Prime Minister and the President seeking the removal of NHRC chairperson and former CJI, Justice K G Balakrishnan, on the basis of a TV channel's story on the judge's aide, M Kannabiran, having been "awarded" two prime plots of land in Chennai by misusing Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi's discretionary power.

Alleging "misbehaviour" on the part of Justice Balakrishnan, the letter claims: "Rules would not have been bent for a lowly employee and in fact Justice Balakrishnan used his influence with the CM of Tamil Nadu to get these allotments."

Ex-CJI Y K Sabharwal: A CJAR press release dated August 3, 2007 accuses Justice Sabharwal of facilitating allotment of "three huge plots of 12,000 sq m in a prime sector of Noida" to Pawan Impex, a company owned by the "Sabharwals" on December 29, 2004 by the Mulayam Singh/Amar Singh government of UP at a rate of only Rs 3,700 per sq m, when the market price of commercial land here was at least Rs 30,000 per sq m at that time."

... contd.

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