Adarsh scam: Bombay HC seeks CBI’s reply on de-freezing society’s two bank accounts
The Bombay high court on Tuesday directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file an affidavit in response to Adarsh Cooperative Housing Society’s plea which challenged freezing of its two bank accounts by the investigating agency.mumbai Updated: Mar 22, 2017 11:35 IST
The Bombay high court on Tuesday directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file an affidavit in response to Adarsh Cooperative Housing Society’s plea which challenged freezing of its two bank accounts by the investigating agency.
The controversial housing society approached the high court after its plea for de-freezing the two bank accounts was turned down by the special CBI court on September 16, 2015. Its lawyer on Tuesday submitted that the amount — totalling Rs1.47 crores — lying in the two accounts had nothing to do with the purported offence.
Both the accounts, at Wodehouse and at Cuffe Parade, are maintained by the State Bank of India, he said. The amount was collected by the society from its members to meet the possible legal expenses much after the “media trial” started in March 2010, he added.
The society’s lawyer further pointed out that the cooperative housing society is a distinct legal entity and that it, unlike some of its members, is not an accused in the case.
Justice Ravindra Ghuge adjourned the plea of the housing society after CBI counsel Hitendra Venegaonkar sought time to file a reply.
According to the prosecution, the building was meant to be occupied by war heroes and widows. But bureaucrates and politicians usurped the 31-storey tower and twisted the rules to grab a flat or two in it.
In 2011, the CBI registered an FIR and booked 13 people, including former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan, while the Enforcement Directorate (ED) registered a separate case against some of the accused for an alleged money laundering. On July 4, 2012, the CBI filed a charge sheet against the accused and dropped charges against two of them. It added two other people in the list of accused. The scam led to the resignation of Chavan from CM’s post.
A day after registration of the FIR in the case, the central agency instructed the SBI not to allow any person to operate the two accounts.