Assets case: Congress leader Dharamsot amassed huge properties in Mohali, Amloh, reveals Punjab vigilance probe - Hindustan Times
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Assets case: Congress leader Dharamsot amassed huge properties in Mohali, Amloh, reveals Punjab vigilance probe

Feb 09, 2023 09:38 PM IST

Former forest minister and Congress leader Sadhu Singh Dharamsot amassed undisclosed properties in Mohali and Amloh worth crores, reveals the Punjab vigilance bureau (VB) probe.

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Dharamsot, who was arrested on February 6 by the VB for amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income, was on February 7 sent to three-day vigilance custody. (Representational Photo)
Dharamsot, who was arrested on February 6 by the VB for amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income, was on February 7 sent to three-day vigilance custody. (Representational Photo)

Former forest minister and Congress leader Sadhu Singh Dharamsot amassed undisclosed properties in Mohali and Amloh worth crores, reveals the Punjab vigilance bureau (VB) probe.

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Dharamsot, who was arrested on February 6 by the VB for amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income, was on February 7 sent to three-day vigilance custody.

A case under Sections 13(1) (b), and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act was registered at the VB range police station in Mohali against Dharamsot.

During interrogation, the VB showed the former forest minister the details of his properties, allegedly amassed through illegal means. The VB is also quizzing him for properties which he bought on other’s name (benami properties), said a senior official of the probe agency.

An official spokesman of the VB confirmed that prime properties have been found in the name of Dharamsot, particularly in Mohali, for which VB has already procured records from the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA).

In his affidavit to the Election Commission of India, the Congress leader has not disclosed five plots (one on his son’s name) he owns in different sectors of Mohali. The market value of these plots is around 10 crore, said a VB official not wishing to be named.

Dharamsot has made payments of some of these properties through cheques, but the details of properties were neither disclosed to the Punjab Assembly nor to the Election Commission. Every minister has to file his property return to Vidhan Sabha annually, while a candidate has to file an affidavit of his movable and immovable properties before the returning officer before elections. To hide his properties, the former minister didn’t disclose some of his bank accounts from where transactions were made to purchase these plots, said the official.

Officials privy to the development said the VB is looking for properties which the former minister purchased on name of his aide, Malerkotla-based timber trader.

According to the VB, during the check period from March 1, 2016, to March 31, 2022, the income of the former minister and his family was 2.37 crore while the expenditure was 8.76 crore, which was 6.39 crore more (269% more) than his known sources of income.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Vishal Rambani is an assistant editor covering Punjab. A journalist with over a decade of experience, he writes on politics, crime, power sector, environment and socio-economic issues. He has several investigative stories to his credit.

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