Nothing wrong if family had shares in firm: Virbhadra

Nothing wrong if family had shares in firm: VirbhadraDharamsala, Dec 21 : Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh Saturday said there was nothing wrong in his family members having shares in a private company setting up a hydropower project in the state.

The chief minister has been facing criticism from the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party over favouring Delhi-based Tarini Group, whose Venture Energy and Technology Ltd was handling the 17 MW Sai Kothi hydropower project in Chamba.

"I am pained by the malicious propaganda and personal attacks involving my family members by the BJP. An attempt is being made to smear my image and reputation," Virbhadra Singh told reporters here.

He said he had faced such a campaign earlier also when BJP's Prem Kumar Dhumal became chief minister twice, and he (Singh) had to face trials in the sessions court.

"Since I had done nothing wrong, nobody could harm me," Virbhadra Singh said.

Giving details of his family's shares in Tarini Infrastructure Ltd, he said the firm was a public-listed company.

"The shares purchased are fully paid up and have been purchased as primary shares. In case of (my wife) Pratibha Singh and (children) Aprajita Singh and Vikramaditya Singh, all are above age of 18 years, are Indian citizens and have fully complied with requisite rules and regulations under law and there is no illegality, violation or irregularity, whatsoever," he said.

He said the subscription to the equities was by way of demand drafts out of personal income of the investors in 2009.

Virbhadra Singh also noted that the Sai Kothi project was allotted during the BJP regime in 2002.

The allocation was cancelled by the Congress government therein over misrepresentation, but it was restored to the company after a Supreme Court order.

He said the government terminated the implementation agreement signed June 16, 2007, with the company as it had failed to deposit the outstanding amount of over Rs. 58 lakh. It had also failed to obtain clearances within stipulated period.(IANS)

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