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Quick verification against Chandy

Quick verification against Chandy

Muvattupuzha: The Vigilance court Saturday ordered a quick verification against former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy in a land deal involving Hope Plantation.

A quick verification has also been ordered against former Revenue Minister Adoor Prakash.

According to the petition, the previous UDF government had granted exemption to 702 acres of government land from Section 81(3) of the Land Reforms Act-1963 and assigned it to the Hope Plantation, Bethel Plantation, and Life Time Plantation, causing the State exchequer a loss of around Rs.356 crore.

Though the government later backtracked on the decision, the action is punishable under Sections 7, 13(1), 13(2), and 15 of the Prevention of Corruption Act-1988, in addition to IPC 120 B and 409.

The Peerumedu Taluk Land Board had taken over the 1,300-acre plantation as government-owned excess land, which was assigned to The South India Tea Estate during the pre-Independence period.

It was also alleged that the UDF government had taken such a decision during the last days of its tenure even as two previous governments in 2004 and 2010 had issued orders for taking over the land.

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