Bombay HC asks CBI to further probe Adarsh scam

Mumbai: Dissatisfied by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) report on the Adarsh Housing Society scam, the Bombay High Court on Wednesday asked the investigative agency to further probe the matter.

A division bench of Justices Abhay Oka and Amjad Sayed passed the order after hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by activist Pravin Wategaonkar in which he alleged that benami or proxy flats were given to senior politicians and bureaucrats in exchange for clearing files relating to the society despite violations.

In the PIL, Wategaonkar said that at the initial stage of investigation in 2011, the CBI, while seeking custody of accused Kanhaiyalal Gidwani, had named two persons who were given four benami flats in the building.

The PIL states that the CBI has not named these two names of political leaders in their chargesheet nor have they been disclosed anywhere else as part of their investigation.

Wategaonkar has also asked the court to either direct the CBI to disclose any document or police report where these names are mentioned or direct them to carry out an additional investigation on them.

The High Court has directed the CBI to file a fresh report on this aspect by 16th of December.

The Supreme Court had last month directed the Centre to take over the Adarsh Housing Society in Mumbai within a week, saying that its present incumbents would not be allowed to deal with its administration or other matters related to it.

The society was originally meant to be a six-storey structure to house Kargil war heroes and war widows, but was converted into a 100-metre-tall building with politicians, bureaucrats and army officers allegedly onspiring to get flats allotted to them in the cooperative society at below-market rates.

The scam was unearthed in November 2010 which forced the then Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan to resign.