MUMBAI: The Satyam scandal is back to haunt the Maharashtra government with the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) reporting ‘undue’ favours granted to the company that cost the state at least Rs 20 crore.
The state-run agency Maharashtra Airport Development Company Limited (MADCL) allegedly sold huge tracts of land to Satyam in Multimodal International Hub Airport (MIHAN) project at Nagpur at much lower rates, the CAG has pointed out. It, however, is no coincidence that RC Sinha, MD, MADCL—the nodal agency for the project—was also the chairman of the tainted Satyam subsidiary, Maytas Infrastructure.
“MADCL allotted 100 acre to Satyam at Rs 18 lakh per acre against applicable rate of Rs 24.28 lakh,” the report said. The land was given to Satyam to set up an IT company at MIHAN on December 5, 2005. MADCL defended the decision by describing it as an “early bird” offer.
But the CAG report, released recently, has exposed how hollow MADC’s claim was. On the same day, another deal was signed for 100-acre of land at MIHAN to Shapoorji Pallonji and Company Limited. However, the latter was charged Rs 26.30 lakh per acre.
“The sale of land to Satyam at lower rate was not justifiable and it resulted in a loss of revenue of Rs 6.28 crore to MADCL owing to undue benefit offered to Satyam,” the CAG report said. Satyam was also given over 28 acres of additional land on March 3, 2007 without the approval of the competent authority at Rs 22.35 lakh per acre while the market price during 2005-06 was Rs 72 lakh per acre, the report highlights.
“The allotment of additional land without the approval of competent authority at less than the prevailing market price of land was irregular and resulted in loss of revenue of Rs 13.93 crore,” it said.
Meanwhile, Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti (VJAS) has dashed off a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh demanding a CBI probe into the whole issue.
It was the VJAS that had first questioned RC Sinha’s dual role on January 10, 2009.