Urban Development and Town and Country Planning Minister Sudhir Sharma has rejected leader of opposition and former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal’s claims, in which he had blamed previous Congress Govt for relaxing section 118 and brought the Apartment Act in 2005 to settle outsiders in the state. Minister advised senior BJP leader to verify facts before giving unfounded statement in the press.

Sudhir Sharma claimed that permission for construction of apartments was not granted to non Himachali by the present Government, but it was during the previous BJP regime, hundreds of permissions had been given to outsiders in violation of all the rules, he added.

He said that previous BJP government had floated rules while giving permission under Section 118 of Himachal Pradesh Land Reforms and Tenancy Act. Sudhir Sharma said that all allegations were being investigated by the State Vigilance Department and within a short time truth will be out in public.

He said that the Government was determined to protect the rights and interests of the State and its people and added that the government has prepared Town and Country Planning Act, 2013 and it would be placed before Vidhan Sabha during the Monsoon Session.

He said that Himachal Pradesh High Court has set aside the orders of the previous BJP government in its judgment on August 31, 2012 thereby freezing the implementation of Apartment Act and the Court had ordered that as long as the Act was enforce, applications have to be processed as per rules.