Kohima (Nagaland ) Sept 24 : With allegations of discrepancies surrounding the Nagaland Commercial complex in Kolkata raised by the Leader of Opposition during the Nagaland Assembly session on September 20, the CM’s Office has said that the lease agreement signed in 1997 with M/S Civil Engineers Enterprise Pvt. Ltd (CEEPL) needs necessary corrective action to ensure that rights of the Government of Nagaland is protected.
In view of the matter being taken to Kolkata High Court by CEEPL, the CMO in a release by its media cell stated that the Nagaland Government has already filed the counter affidavit and are confident of winning the case and ensuring that the rightful rent is paid to the government.
Giving a brief background of the case, the CMO stated that the 1997 agreement was signed as a consequence of decision taken in a cabinet meeting convened on January 29, 1997 to discuss the Nagaland complex in Kolkata.
A cabinet sub committee was formed to look into the matter. The then cabinet sub-committee that included S K Sangtam, minister (H&FW), Imtisungit, minister (Forests), K Therie, minister (PHED), I. Imkong, minister (RD), P Enyei, minister (YRS), Chuba Chang, minister (Home) and TCK Lotha, Chief Secretary had a meeting with S Ghosal of M/S Engineers Enterprise on February 17, 1997 in Kolkata and agreed that the lease agreement has to be for 20 years as per the West Bengal Tenancy Act.
The annual rent was fixed at Rs 60 lakh per annum with enhancement of rent decided as per the Tenancy Act.
M/S Engineers Enterprise requested that if State Bank of India enhances rent they would also agree to proportionate increase of rent, and the lesse agreed to execute the lease directly with the Government of Nagaland and bear all expenses after paying Rs 60 lakh annual rent, it said.
The CMO stated that the draft lease deed was approved by the State cabinet on December 6, 1997 and subsequently the lease deed was signed on December 24, 1997 by the then chief secretary A M Gokhale.
The lease was effective from January 1, 1998 for 20 years and expired on January 1, 2018. (Agencies).