A Delhi court on Wednesday framed charges against a former vice-chairman of Delhi’s urban development agency Delhi Development Authority, or DDA and eight others, including executives of DLF Ltd, over “undue benefits” extended by the agency to the real estate firm.
According to India’s apex criminal investigation agency the Central Bureau of Investigation, or CBI, former DDA vice-chairman Subhash Sharma, three former DDA commissioners, a “middleman” Dharambeer Khattar, and some executives of DLF Universal Ltd (now DLF Ltd) including Ajay Khanna, were involved in allowing the real estate firm a floor area ratio, or FAR, (which defines how much it can build on a certain plot of land) of 300 or three times the size of the plot as compared to 139. DLF spokesperson Sanjay Roy declined to comment on the issue.
The charges clear the decks for a trial of the nine people involved in this.
The accused officials, who were to get a bribe of Rs1.10 crore from the construction major, had charged less than the prevailing market rates for allowing the company an enhanced FAR, CBI alleged.
Former DDA vice-chairman Subhash Sharma was to get Rs50 lakh out of the bribe, the agency said.
Additional sessions judge I.K. Kochhar, found prima facie evidence against the accused and said that charges under the IPC (Indian Penal Code) and the Prevention of Corruption Act be framed against them for hatching a criminal conspiracy and taking a bribe to extend undue benefits to the company.
The court will now start recording testimonies of prosecution witnesses from 28 July.
CBI had unearthed a scam involving top DDA officials in 2003 and filed four separate corruption cases, including the one that allegedly involved DLF executives.