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'Ex-assembly speaker favoured extra FSI'

mumbai Updated: Sep 06, 2011 00:37 IST
Zeeshan Shaikh
Zeeshan Shaikh
Hindustan Times
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Deposing before the two-member Adarsh inquiry commission on Monday, Congress leader and one of the promoters of the Adarsh society Kanhaiyalal Gidwani said he had persuaded the then speaker of the Maharashtra assembly, Krishnajirao Rakhmajirao Desai alias Babasaheb Kupekar,to write a letter recommending extra Floor Space Index (FSI) for the society in 2005. Kupekar was subsequently made a member of the Adarsh society.

Gidwani in his deposition claimed that Kupekar had written a letter dated July 21, 2005, addressed to the then chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh. In this letter, he had recommended granting of additional FSI for the Adarsh society.

The promoter claimed that Kupekar wrote the letter to Deshmukh because he met and persuaded him to do so. "I met Kupekar requesting him to recommend additional FSI to the chief minister as mentioned in the letter," Gidwani said in his deposition.

On August 5, 2005, within 15 days of writing this recommendation, Kupekar applied for membership of the Adarsh society. Following his application, the society wrote to the collector, Mumbai, on December 31, 2007, to add him as a member.

Gidwani also claimed that the society was not only looking at the land for residential purpose but was also looking to exploit it for commercial benefit.

He had written a letter on February 11, 2005, to the principal secretary, revenue and forests department where he had indicated that the society was proposing to utilise 700 sq m space from additional FSI for commercial purposes. "It is true that the society sought the additional FSI to use 700 sq m for commercial use and earn money out of it," Gidwani said.