Court order can’t interfere with probe: HC
The Bombay high court vacated the stay on the police probe into the alleged Rs. 30,000-crore housing scam in Powai, involving developer Niranjan Hiranandani and state bureaucrat TC Benjamin, on Tuesday saying that a court order cannot interfere with the investigation of a criminal case.
The court stayed the probe when Benjamin filed a plea, after the Anti Corruption Bureau filed an FIR against the duo.
The FIR was registered following a complaint by activist Simpreet Singh.
In January 1977, the state had decided to undertake a mass housing project in Powai. Instead of acquiring the excess land, the state allowed it to be returned to Hiranandani Group on the condition that the developer would implement Powai Area Development Scheme.
Singh alleges that Hiranandani cheated the state and the public by converting PADS into a luxury homes project by violating the tripartite agreement entered into by the state, MMRDA and Hiranandani Group, aided by bureaucrats such as Benjamin, who turned a blind eye towards violations.
As per the agreement, the developer was to construct tenements of 40 sq metres on 50% of the land and 80 sq metres on the remaining 50%, and hand over 15% of the constructed area to the state at Rs135 per sq ft.
Acting on two PILs, the court had on February 22, 2012, restrained Hiranandani Group from further construction on open space under PADS and directed the developer to built 1,511 tenements of 40 sq metres each and 1,593 tenements of 80 sq metres each and sell them to the state at Rs 135 per sq ft.