Patanjali Yogpeeth has challenged the decision of Himachal government of canceling the lease of land of about 28 acres of land allotted by previous BJP led government and has approached the Himachal Pradesh High Court against the decision
In its writ petition, the trust has sought possession of the land given to it by the previous BJP government on a 99 year lease. The case has been listed for February 27, and the state government has already filed a caveat.
About 28 acres of land near Sadhupul in Solan district was given to the Yogpeeth by the previous BJP government in 2010 for token lease of Rs 1 per year for a period of 99 years.
After coming to power, the Congress government cancelled the land lease on February 19. And on February 22, the Himachal authorities took over the land given to Patanjali Yogpeeth.
The Yogpeeth mentioned in its petition that the state government had entered into the agreement to lease the land for development of health tourism, growing of herbs and developmet of medical science.
Patanjali Yogpeeth has claimed that the land was given to the trust through a valid deed and it had incurred an expenditure of over Rs 11 crore on development of land and other infrastructure.
Alleging that the state government had taken over the possession of the land in an “illegal manner”, the petition said that once the lease was entered, the same can only be terminated as per terms of the lease or through process of law.
In its petition, the trust pointed out that the government has even issued a show cause notice as per clause 10 of the terms and condition of lease deed. In its petition Patanjali Yogpeeth claimed that the government has violated the principles of natural justice and therefore the action of state government is bad. Meanwhile, Municipal Committee Solan today granted permission to Yogpeeth to hold a rally at Thodo ground on February 27. Ramdev is scheduled to arrive at Solan in the afternoon and will leave after the rally.
However, on the other side, the state government has begun an inquiry into the role of the field staff of the Revenue Department who had leased a 28-acre land to Swami Ramdev’s Patanjali Yogpeeth after its recent report contradicted the December 2009 revenue report. The report claimed that it was a common pool land, which had been vested with the state government. However, a field official had in its December 2009 report said the 28-acre land, which was proposed to be leased out to the Patanjali Yogpeeth, had been vested with the state government under the Himachal Pradesh Village Common Land Vesting and Utilisation Act, 1974, and it belonged to the common pool. The land was later allotted to the Patanjali Yogpeeth in 2010.
However, a recent inquiry conducted by the Revenue Department found that the field report given by an officer in December 2009 was incorrect and misleading as the land had not been vested with the state government. It was granted to the Governor of Punjab by the Maharaja of Patiala, which became the property of the state government after the division of Punjab.
The Assistant Chief Secretary (Revenue) has directed officials to investigate in detail about the misleading report filed by the field official of the Revenue Department in December 2009, which appeared to be aimed at facilitating grant of land lease to the Patanjali Yogpeeth. It is learned that these officials will have to submit their report within the next fortnight.