HC orders HUDA plot allotment inquiry be completed in 2 months

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Chandigarh, Nov 7 (UNI) Taking cognizance of the serious allegations about allotment of the residential plots meant for the industrial workers to some officers by Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) at Panipat, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today directed that the vigilance inquiry into seventeen specific individuals listed as respondents in a PIL be completed within two months.

In case this was not done within the prescribed period, the concerned investigating officer would remain present in the court at the next hearing fixed for January 20, 2009 so that appropriate orders for action against him were passed, the division bench of Chief Justice Tirath Singh Thakur and Justice Jasbir Singh directed during the resumed hearing on the PIL filed against the allotments in question by Panipat-based trade union leader P P Kapur.

At the same time, the high court also disapproved the stand taken by HUDA that any person employed in an industry is to be treated as an industrial worker irrespective of his or her designation or nomenclature and that senior executives, managers or supervisors were also to be treated as industrial workers.

''We are prima facie of the view that only these persons employed in the industry, who came within the definition of workmen under the industrial disputes act would be entitled to allotment of plot as industrial worker'', the bench observed.

The counsel for HUDA submitted that a vigilance inquiry into the case had been ordered by the state government in 2005 but it was delayed as it involved 1000 plots to a large number of allottees. The investigation which saw a change of seven investigation officers is being conducted now by DSP Sajjan Kumar of the vigilance bureau, it was further submitted.

The bench has also ordered the Haryana government to ensure that summons to be issued by the Registrar of the high court for three people namely Pankaj Gupta, senior export executive of Gupta Textiles, K S Yadav of Ballarpur Industries and V S Venkatratnam senior manager, National Fertilizers, all Panipat-based individuals, were served to enable their presence in the court at the time of next hearing. They are among the beneficiaries of residential plots scheme meant for industrial workers.


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