In a blow to former Maharashtra CM Ashok Chavan, just two days after he was made chief of the Congress’ state unit, the Bombay high court on Wednesday refused to clear his name in the Adarsh scam.
Chavan had challenged the court’s earlier ruling that refused to allow the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to drop his name from the charge sheet.
On November 19, 2014, justice ML Tahaliyani dismissed the CBI petition to drop prosecution against Chavan on the grounds that the Maharashtra Governor did not sanction prosecuting him. The central agency had moved the high court after a special CBI court declined to drop prosecution against Chavan.
Justice Tahaliyani had rejected the CBI’s petition saying Chavan was not only charged with conspiracy, but also of individual acts while working as revenue minister, and then as chief minister.
“The charges levelled against respondent No 2 [Chavan] for the alleged individual acts cannot go away only because the Governor has refused to grant sanction for prosecuting him for conspiracy and cheating,” the judge said.
The court said Chavan was holding a public office and had obtained pecuniary advantage for his mother-in-law and a brother of his father-in-law. “It cannot be co-incident that two close relatives of respondent No. 2 got flats worth crores of rupees, according to the market value, by investing much lesser amounts,” justice Tahaliyani said.
Chavan had asked the court to recall its earlier order saying it had not heard his argument on certain points. It was contended on his behalf that it was necessary to recall the order, hear the parties on the point and pronounce a fresh order.
Justice Tahaliyani rejected Chavan’s plea saying he found no substance in it.