The Opposition and civic activists have demanded that the probe into the CIDCO deals during the tenure of former managing director G. S. Gill be handled by an independent authority.
"There is a question of propriety because those who have been part of CIDCO or its parent department, Urban Development Department (UDD) are conducting the probe,"said Opposition leader in the Assembly, Eknath Khadse.
T.C. Benjamin, who is a director on the CIDCO board, will be conducting the probe. "The land allotments should be probed by the CID. We will take the matter to the Central Vigilance Commission,"Khadse said.
Civic activist G. R. Vora said: "This is just an eyewash to hush the matter. An independent authority should have been assigned this probe.”
State officials said the decision to announce a probe by the secretary of the department concerned would be improper. "It is not that doubts are being raised over Benjamin, but it will be difficult to convince people or the Opposition,"said a senior officer. "It is an open secret that most major decisions related to land are taken by keeping the Mantralaya in loop,"he added.
In fact, the recent controversy has also put the focus on the functioning of the board of directors. CIDCO sources confirm that almost half of the directors seldom attend the meetings. Further the meetings get postponed regularly either on the whims of a director or because of the lack of quorum.
When Hindustan Times spoke to Pradeep Rath, company secretary, CIDCO, he confirmed that the July 30 meeting has been postponed to August 6 due to "inconvenience to the directors”. He also confirmed that another meeting in July had to be postponed because of lack of quorum. Rath denied that board meetings are not held regularly.