MUMBAI: The original copy of the ‘feasibility report’ in the multi- crore Kalina library scam has been destroyed, an investigation by the state anticorruption bureau (ACB) has revealed. The ACB has incorporated this in the charge sheet it has filed in the case.
Sources from the ACB said the original report is one of the most important pieces of evidence for authenticity. The ‘feasibility report’ pertaining to the project highlighted the financial model, the profits and feasibility.
According to ACB sources, the case involves a prime plot at Kalina belonging to the Mumbai University, which granted a fouracre plot to the state to construct a library. The university decided to construct the library through a government entity, ACB stated.
The PWD department, under the then minister Chhagan Bhujbal, allegedly issued tenders to construct the library in 2009 on one portion of the plot, and allegedly leased out the remaining land to a wellknown developer for 99 years, at Re1 per square metre, which the ACB said is illegal. The revenue department was kept in the dark about this deal and the collector was not informed, the ACB has alleged.
“The original copy of the feasibility report has not been found in the records. The said report has been destroyed by the accused government servants – Gajanan Sawant, who was then a sub-divisional engineer; Harish Patil, an executive engineer at the time; and Anilkumar Gaikwad, then superintending engineer of PWD department,” said the charge sheet, a copy of which is available with HT.
While the original copy is missing, the ACB probe revealed that a colour photocopy of the report has been used in the records.
The ACB invoked section 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender) against the accused after the revelation.
“A forged report was submitted to the government as a true report. During our investigation, it found that the report in Mantralaya did not match the report with the PWD department. There were changes done in the false report submitted in Mantralaya – the super built-up area was not taken into account and hence the profits the builder was to make were shown lower,” said a source.
The ACB had sent the documents to the forensic science laboratory (FSL), which confirmed that a photocopy was used. Sources pointed out that government officials in connivance with then public works department (PWD) minister Chhagan Bhujbal caused loses to the government while ensuring huge profits to a private entity.