The first information report (FIR) filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation in the Adarsh case could mean trouble not just for former chief minister Ashok Chavan, who is one of the accused, but also for the Congress party in power at the Centre and in the state.
The FIR accused Chavan of adding civilians to the list of Adarsh members and also exempting the controversial society from the condition that a specific part of the land allotted to it should be maintained as a recreational ground.
Chavan had to step down as chief minister last year, after the Adarsh scam broke out, because his in-laws were members of the controversial society.
There is a question mark over Chavan’s political future. He will now have to face two inquiries — one by the CBI and another by a judicial committee appointed by the state government. Chavan’s political future now depends on the outcome of the case and the judicial probe. Chavan chose not to comment.
The CBI filed the FIR on Saturday naming 14 retired and serving bureaucrats, defence personnel and politicians as accused. Although Chavan is the only politician whose name appears in the FIR, submitted in the court on Tuesday, the Congress’s troubles are far from over.
The roles played by Chavan’s predecessors, Vilasrao Deshmukh and Sushilkumar Shinde, will also be questioned in both the inquiries. Adarsh was allotted land when Shinde was the chief minister and it was given more floor space index to a build 31-storey tower by changing the reservation of adjoining plots during Deshmukh’s tenure.
Demands are already being made for including both these Congress leaders in the list of accused. If that happens, the Congress will face further embarrassment since both of them are Union ministers.
“What the CBI has done is not enough. Why did they not include Shinde and Deshmukh as well as other bureaucrats who were involved [in the FIR]? They should book all those who handled the Adarsh file and got benefits by clearing it,” Opposition leader in the Assembly Eknath Khadse said. He said the opposition parties would make this demand in the session of the Assembly to be held in March.