Himachal land row , BJP to stand by Ramdev


bjp logoShimla : A day after the ruling Congress in Himachal Pradesh took over the land leased out to Baba Ramdev’s trust the BJP’s state unit came forward in support of the yoga guru .

“We will stand by Baba Ramdev as his movement is in the interest of the country ,”said Satpal Satti , president of the BJP’s state unit .

After cancelling the 99 year lease to the Yogpeeth Trust the state police on Friday took over the 28 acre land and buildings and posted police at the construction site in Sadhupul some 55 km from Shimla .

Baba Ramdev was scheduled to arrive on 27 February at Sadhupul to open the first phase of the ayurveda hospital yoga centre and food park here .

The previous BJP government in 2010 had allotted the land to the trust for a token lease of Rs 1 per year for 99 years .

The market value of this land is Rs 35.4 crore .

State chief secretary S Roy said that Baba Ramdev is welcome to visit the state but he will not be allowed to carry out any activity at the site which is under the state government’s possession now.

The state government will appeal to him (Ramdev) to cancel his proposed 27 February inauguration programme. We hope that there will be no law and order issue,” Roy said .

The move to hand over the land to Ramdev was strongly opposed by the opposition Congress in 2010 .

The now ruling Congress is also opposed to the undue favour as the deal has been signed in the name of Acharya Balkrishan who is being probed for being a Nepalese national , state revenue minister Kaul Singh said.

The matter was discussed at length in the cabinet meeting earlier this week. It reportedly described the land lease to Ramdev’s Trust as “illegal” .