Upcoming cover: The rise and fall of Yadav Singh

He ran three prime authorities dealing with land in the national capital region. His story reveals why India’s biggest state remains mired in mis-governance

GN Bureau | September 30, 2015


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He was the single-window counter for all builders, big-time contractors and land sharks operating in Noida, Greater Noida and Yamuna Expressway areas. He was the de-facto broker-cum-commission agent of three land-rich authorities of the national capital region (NCR). He reported directly to the ‘Pancham Tal’, or the fifth floor of Annexe Bhawan of Lucknow – the power centre of Uttar Pradesh as it has the office of the chief minister and his influential team of secretaries.

He was a money spinner and a mobile bank. Mr. Thirty Percent, as he was famously known, had huge projects in hand which were doled out to his favourite gang of contractors at commissions ranging from 20 percent to 30 percent, depending on the profit margin of the specific project. He had mastered the art of minting money and the pie was distributed from the top to the bottom. No one in the system was left out dissatisfied. A major pound of flesh was allocated for his political masters whom he always kept in good humour. Such was his power and influence that the wedding of his daughter took place in the Noida stadium, which is otherwise out of bounds for the general public for such functions and has witnessed only a few marriage ceremonies.

He is said to have given to his cronies contracts worth over Rs 10,000 crore and facilitated allotment of group housing, commercial, industrial and institutional plots to many top-ranking builders in Noida, Greater Noida and Yamuna Expressway – till time ran out for him. Like every story, this one too reached its anti-climax when finally someone spilled the beans. Investigating agencies swung into action and unearthed more than they had expected in their wildest dreams. With each passing day, more and more information is unravelling and now they say that this could just be the tip of the iceberg.

This is a small introduction of none other than the former engineer-in-chief of Noida, Greater Noida and Yamuna Expressway authorities, Yadav Singh. Such was his clout with the Uttar Pradesh government and the CM’s secretariat that he ensured that two CEOs of Noida got shunted out within minutes, as soon as he felt that they were trying to curtail his powers.

Read full story by Vivek Avasthi in our October 1-15, 2015 issue

 

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