-Rs150m worth land being used for commercial purposes
-In Sukna land scam , Indian Generals sold 71 acres of sensitive army land
-3 top Indian Generals lost jobs, grace in Sukna land scam
-Generals also found guilty in Adarsh Housing scam
-Indian army appears to be locked in never ending land scams
NEW DELHI – The corruption tainted Indian army has been hit by yet another mega land scam while it was yet to come out of the tremors, that jolted it with Sukhna land scam and Adarsh Housing scam with a number mega corruption scandals evolving all around this otherwise world’s 2nd largest army, reveal the findings of The Daily Mail.
These investigations indicate that Indian Defiance Minister A K Antony has ordered a comprehensive probe by country’s top civilian investigation agency the CBI into a land scam in Jodhpur, involving illegal and unauthorized transfer of a 4.84 acre army land to a trust belonging to a rich family in 2007 by the top officials of the Indian Army with the criminal connivance of Indian Defiance Ministry officials.
The Daily Mail’s investigations reveal further that Indian Army’s piece of land, measuring 4.84 acre was transferred to the private trust belonging to a Royal family of Jodhpur in 2007. The plot of land, located in the heart of the city, is now being developed for commercial purposes and is worth Rs 15 crore ( 150 millions) . However, the Indian Defense Minister could only order the CBI probe after an additional secretary-rank officer completed the departmental inquiry into the matter and developed sufficient evidences to establish a case..
The Daily Mail’s investigations indicate that in the recent scam, some top officials of the Defense Estate Organization (DEO) are also under the scanner and their roles would be looked into by the CBI in its investigations.
The Daily Mail’s investigations indicate that a few years back, the Indian army got introduced to the world as a major land mafia in India when a former Indian Military Secretary Lt Gen Avadesh Prakash was found guilty on three counts by an army court in Guwahati in the Sukna land scam involving transfer of 71 acres of land adjacent to the military station in West Bengal.
He was the senior-most Army officer to face Court Martial. However, the court gave him benefit of doubt on the fourth count of committing a civil offence. Prakash was held guilty of misusing his position under the Army Act section 45 (conduct unbecoming of his position as an officer) and section 52 (intent to defraud) by the General Court Martial at the 51 sub area of the army station at Narengi.
The court martial was conducted after Prakash was indicted by an army court of inquiry early last year for his role in the illegal transfer of land adjacent to the Sukna military station near Siliguri in West Bengal to a private realtor for constructing an educational institution in 2008. Indian army had earlier punished another senior officer and former 33 Corps Commander Lt. Gen. PK Rath in the same case and had awarded punishment involving loss of seniority and some part of his pension.
The scam started back in 2008 when the tricky move to transfer the land in Siliguri district of West Bengal to a private educational trust came out in the open, leading to the army initiating the disciplinary proceedings against senior army officials, including General Avadesh Prakash and General Rath.
Prakash was held guilty of misusing his position under the Army Act section 45 (conduct unbecoming of his position as an officer) and section 52 (intent to defraud) by the General Court Martial at the 51 sub area of the army station at Narengi.
The Daily Mail’s investigations indicate that this episode of mega land scandal pushed Indian army into a “War of Generals”. According to these investigations, that at this stage, the then Indian Army Chief General Deepak Kumar and the then Commander Eastern Command ( know as Fort Williams boss) Lt. General V.K Singh, who later became Indian Army Chief himself, locked horns with each other and both started all out efforts to get supports of maximum Corps Commanders, Formation Commanders and Principal Staff Officers and making outrageous efforts to bring them to their respective groups as the Kapoo-Singh row over the military lands scams started to soar
These findings indicate that four very senior Generals of Indian Army including the then Military Secretary Lt. Gen. Avdesh Prakash and the then head of 33rd Corps of the Indian army Lt. Gen. P.K. Rath were served show-cause notices, asking why action should not be taken against them over the Sukna land scam case.
The Daily Mail’s findings reveal that the difference between the then Indian army Chief General Kapoor and the then Chief of Army’s Eastern Command, Lt. General V.K Singh, who was, at that time, the senior-most Lieutenant General, went too deep after the inquiries into a military land scam began. These finding indicate that this tension between the 2 top Generals of Indian army reached to the extreme when a Court of Inquiry, convened by the Eastern Army Commander who was based in Fort William in Calcutta, started the proceedings and recommended for the sacking of Army Chief, General Kapoor’s Principal Staff Officer (PSO) and Military Secretary, Lt Gen. Avadhesh Prakash. According to the sources in the in the Indian army, the Army Chief General Kapoor made an abortive attempt to defend his top confidant. The Daily Mail’s investigations further indicate that the Court of Inquiry, presided over by the then Commander 4 Corps, based at Tezpur, Lt Gen. K.T. Parnaik, had forwarded its findings to Lt Gen. Singh. Based on the findings and on consultations with the Judge Advocate General (JAG) in his command, the Eastern army commander recommended the “termination of services” of Lt Gen. Prakash because of his alleged involvement in a land scam case. This situation paralyzed the entire Indian army establishment as the scuffle between the 2 bigwigs of the Indian Army continued to rise day by day with Army Chief trying to show his muscles to Commander Eastern Command and resisting JAG branch’s recommendations while Commander Eastern Command sticking to the set rules and procedures.
The Daily Mail’s investigations reveal that this War Of Generals in the Indian army that continued for almost year, finally came to an end with the then Indian COAS General Deepak Kapoor licking his own spit for protecting his confidante Generals who eventually proved out to be the main characters of this mega land scam of Indian army.
The Daily Mail’s findings reveal further that while the Indian army top brass was still licking the wounds of the Sukna land scam, the Indian Army leadership was engulfed by yet another corruption scam with Generals greasing their palms with the blood of the Kargil martyrs of the Indian Army.
The Daily Mail’s investigations show that authorities concerned in India investigated as to how the Adarsh Society in upscale Colaba, Mumbai, originally meant to be a six-storey structure to house Kargil War heroes and widows, got converted into a 31-storey luxurious building.
These findings further indicate that the high-rise was built on 6,450 sq meters within the Colaba Naval area and was cleared on the condition of housing war veterans but it eventually got 104 members including senior army commanders, a former environment minister, legislators and state bureaucrats.
The Daily Mail’s investigations indicate that instead of allotting the apartments to the widows of Kargil martyrs, the top leadership of the Indian Army, including former Army Chief, General Deepak Kapoor, former Army Chief General N.C. Vij and former Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Madhavendra Singh etc, with the criminal connivance of the management of the Adarsh Society managed to get their share of apartments; otherwise built to accommodate the widows and families of those who were killed during the Kargil War with Pakistan.
The Daily Mail’s findings further reveal that later, The Indian army’s boat was hit by another land scam in 2011, this time involving a former Minister of State for Defence Production and former Army Chief, with a top army commander saying they had facilitated “illegal” sale of a prime piece of land in Mumbai, These investigations indicate that after receipt of the report from the then Southern Army Commander Lt Gen Pradeep Khanna, the then Indian Army Chief Gen V K Singh initiateda CBI probe into the incident of 2007 when Rao Inderjit Singh was the Minister and Gen Deepak Kapoor was the Army Chief.
The Daily Mail’s findings indicate that General Khanna pointed in a report to the Army Headquarters that the plot of land in Kandivali-Malad area in Mumbai,, which was with Army on lease, was sold “illegally” to a private builder in 2007 at the intervention Inderjit Singh and Gen Kapoor. In his report, which was forwarded by the Army to the Ministry, the Pune-based Army Commander recommended a proper investigation into the entire issue. Top Indian Generals were found guilty in this scam as well.