Chavan, others formally charged in Adarsh scam

Last Updated: Wed, Jul 04, 2012 12:30 hrs

Mumbai, July 4 (IANS) Former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan was among 13 people, including senior bureaucrats and defence officials, formally charged by the CBI here Wednesday in the multi-crore Adarsh Housing Society scam.

The Central Bureau of Investigation filed a charge sheet in the scam case, that came to light in 2010, at a special CBI court here. The 10,000-page document was filed before the registrar of the special CBI court here 18 months after the investigative agency registered a case.

After completion of the investigation, the CBI has filed the charge sheet against 13 accused, a CBI official said.

Besides Chavan, the other officials named in the charge sheet are are Maj. Gen. (retd) A.R. Kumar, Maj. Gen. (retd) T.K. Kaul, IAS officers Pradeep Vyas and Subhash Lalla, former Congress legislator Kanahiyalal Gidwani and retired defence estates officer R.C. Thakur.

Brig.(retd) M.M. Wanchoo, former urban development deputy secretary P.V. Deshmukh, Brig. (retd) T.K. Sinha, retired information commissioner Ramanand Tiwari, former Mumbai civic chief Jairaj Phathak and Col. (retd) R.K. Bakshi are the others who have been charge sheeted.

The investigation with respect to "benami" (proxy) transactions and any other new facts that may emerge during the probe will be filed after completion of investigation in due course of time, the official said.

Earlier Wednesday, the Bombay High Court heard a bunch of petitions where the state government claimed that the Adarsh society land belonged to it and not to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and that the CBI cannot probe the scam.

After hearing the arguments, a division bench of Justice S.A. Bobde and Justice Mridula Bhatkar directed the Ministry of Defence to file an affidavit within two weeks and adjourned the hearing on the public interest litigations (PILs) till July 18.

The scam involves a prime plot in south Mumbai's Colaba on which a 31-storey building was constructed by the society, allegedly illegally.

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