Free site, for what reason?

While High Court Judge Justice K L Manjunath clarified in his own defense that his daughter K M Chaitra had purchased a site from the discredited Vyalikaval House Building Co-operative Society as a non-member, documents with MiD DAY show otherwise.

The reason doubts are cropping up are because sale records have no mention of mode of payment , cash or otherwise.

Also, the purchase was clearly illegal as the society was not allowed to sell sites to non-members.
Documents including the absolute sale deed of the site sold to Chaitra only substantiate suspicions that the society might have gifted the site to the judge.

Manjunath had heard the societies petition challenging the BDA's order canceling the work order given to develop a layout in Nagavara Village and decided in favour of the society. Furthermore, his daughter had got the site even before the society filed the petition before the High Court.

However, Manjunath had  also said he was not aware of his daughters dealings with the society during the hearing.

The absolute sale deed, through which Chaitra obtained the site (no. 402 measuring 5460 sq ft, survey no. 24/5 at Nagavara Village) says she bought it by paying Rs 6,82,500.

However, there is no mention of mode of payment in the records and it does not cite details of cheque or demand draft, while the Income Tax Act mandates any payment above Rs 20,000 through either of the two.

Chaitra was 20 years old and a student when she purchased the site and the source of her income at that point is not known.

Apart from this, the High Court and Supreme Court had ordered, in multiple cases relating to the society, to restore the land to the original landowners after observing 'the society itself was not a bona fide house building society', considering the fraud committed by it to manipulate membership and other irregularities.

The SC order says, 'possession of the lands shall be restored to the respective landowners irrespective of the fact whether they had challenged the acquisition of their lands or not.

On restoration of possession to the landowners, they shall refund the amount received by them as compensation or otherwise in respect of their land'.

In the event of the landowners not appearing for the restoration, the land had to go the revenue department, but not be sold.

Following the SC order, the revenue department had issued an order to effect the restoration of the possession of the land to the respective owners. However, out of 176 acres, only 40 acre has gone back to the owners and rest is vehemently misused.

"The society has gifted sites to various officials, including government, police and judicial, to get co-operation for illegal dealings," said one of the members of the society, who petitioned against it.

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