Manmohan Singh
Prime Minister Manmohan SinghReuters

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's friend and former key adviser TK Nair has caught up in a fresh land row, which runs the nexus with the controversial BEML-Tatra truck deal.

TK Nair's niece and friends had been allotted with lands in south Bangalore by the BEML at a throwaway price, reported the Hindu.

A cooperative society of BEML employees gave off the land to three of Nair's people at a subsidised rates when the complaints about Bharat Earth Movers Limited (BEML) chairman and managing director VRS Natarajan's involvement in the Tatra truck deal was pending with the Prime Minister's Office in 2005.

An article in the Hindu on Sunday said that a stakeholder and former employee of BEML, KS Periyaswamy, wrote a letter to the President and Prime Minister on August 7, 2010, regarding the violations in allotting lands to the kin and kith of TK Nair, who continues to hold the Minister of State rank, in a deal to mute the Prime Minister's Office on Tatra scam.

In his letter, Periyaswamy had alleged that the BEML sanctioned lands to the Nair's relatives and friends under the pressure of Natarajan.

However, following Periyaswamy's letter, the alleged beneficiaries returned the lands to the BEML cooperative society in December 2010.

The IBTimes couldn't reach Periyaswamy on Sunday for further comments on the alleged illegal land allotments in Bangalore.

Tatra scam

In 2005, the Defence Ministry was alleged of procuring trucks for the Indian Army from an agent but not from the original manufacturer based in Czech Republic.

BEML was accused of acting as an intermediary company in assembling parts of these vehicles, without inducting the technology.  

The Tatra scam came back into the spotlight last month after Army General VK Singh revealed a bribe bid, which was offered to him by retired Defence Intelligence Agency chief Lt Gen Tejinder Singh in a deal to clear about 600 Tatra sub-standard trucks in 2010.

VK Singh alleged that about 7,000 trucks in Indian Army were bought for an exorbitant price over the years.