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Bathinda

Posted at: Jul 13, 2018, 12:23 AM; last updated: Jul 13, 2018, 12:23 AM (IST)

MCB told to repay Rs 52 cr to PIDB

MC Commissioner holds meeting to discuss sites that can be given to board
MCB told to repay Rs 52 cr to PIDB
After getting the directions, the MCB has started searching for prime land in the city. File photo

Sukhmeet Bhasin

Tribune News Service

Bathinda, July 12

The state government has asked the Municipal Corporation of Bathinda (MCB) to return Rs 52.45 crore loan with interest to the Punjab Infrastructure Development Board (PIDB), which was taken in 2008.

The Director of the Local Bodies Department has written a letter to the MCB in which it has directed the latter to return the loan amount with interest to the PIDB at the earliest.

It is also stated that if the MCB doesn’t have money to repay the loan, it can give any of its commercial open land, except Blue Fox land, in the city to the PIDB. The director has also demanded a list of MCB land sites.

After getting the directions, the MCB has started searching for prime land in the city.

Municipal Commissioner Rishipal Singh on Thursday held a meeting with MCB officials in which discussion on a few sites was held, which the MCB plans to give to the PIDB.

To arrange funds for development projects, the MCB had sold its 21 acres of Blue Fox to the PIDB in 2008, for which the latter had given Rs 40 crore as advance. In 2011, the PIDB gave Rs 12.45 crore against the grant, which state government was to give to the MCB.

Later, a resident filed a case in the High Court against the land deal and the court put a stay on this.

Later, the MCB sold this land to the Bathinda Improvement Trust for Rs 82.47 crore. The Trust took a loan from bank and paid Rs 21.25 crore and later Rs 2 crore to the MCB.

The pending amount was to be given by the Trust in six instalments, along with interest.

The MCB had done the deal on the assurance of a bank loan of complete Rs 82 crore, but afterwards the bank refused to give this amount.

The pending amount of Rs 59.22 crore has still not been paid to the MCB.

The state government has directed the MCB to forego the interest on the amount of the Improvement Trust and the civic body has in turn told the state government to exempt it from paying interest on the PIDB amount.

Mayor Balwant Rai Nath said, “We don’t have any land or money to give to the PIDB. We are facing problems in giving salaries to the employees. Now the state government wants us to repay the Rs 52.45 crore to the PIDB at the earliest. It should convert this loan into grant.”

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