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Army Land near India-Pak border sold for Rs1500 crores-CBI

New Delhi, Oct 3 (): In an another major embarrassment and exposing the chinks in the border security the CBI unearthed a large land scam conducted by the Defense Estates and land sharks by which land was sold next to air force base and 15 Corps regiment HQ. Defense minister AK Antony had asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe the case, which early estimates indicate will put the Sukna and Adarsh scandals in the shade. Indian Army is the single biggest land owner in the country. The land it owns is four times the size of Delhi.

200 acres of the land is priced anywhere between Rs 1,200 crore and Rs 1,500 crore. Collusion of State Government officials is also being probed. The corps is at the center of counter-terrorism operations in the Valley and responsible for guarding a 300-km stretch of the line of control running between the Pir Panjal range and Zojila.

41 officers who allegedly sold service weapons on the black market. Army colonel seeking military honors as a route to promotion was sacked after he was caught faking gun battles with militants by sprinkling tomato ketchup on civilians, who were made to lie still on the ground in 2003.

Press coverage earned the disgraced officer the nickname “Ketchup Colonel” and led to a military investigation into other medal seekers.

A year later, a commander was arrested after he earned the sobriquet “Brigadier Booze” for selling subsidized military liquor. In 2008 a general faced a court martial for allegedly skimming combat ration funds.

Last June, Army blacklisted seven firms including artillery maker Singapore Technologies and state-run Israeli Military Industries after police accused a defense ministry bureaucrat of taking bribes. The step froze a US$240-million Israeli arms contract and ended the army’s dreams of acquiring modern artillery worth over US1 billion from the firm

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