CBI files charge sheet against 18 including IRB officials in Pune-Mumbai expressway land grabbing case
The agency filed a 2,000-page chargesheet in the special CBI court accusing IRB officials including its managing director Virendra Mhaiskar, farmers and agents of buying land, originally acquired by the government, for the Pune-Mumbai expressway near Lonavala and reselling it to one of its sister concern.pune Updated: Dec 07, 2017 16:31 IST
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed a charge sheet against 18 persons, some of them senior officials of Ideal Road Builders (IRB) in a Pune court in an alleged land grabbing case, officials said on Wednesday.
The agency filed a 2,000-page chargesheet in the special CBI court accusing IRB officials including its managing director Virendra Mhaiskar, farmers and agents of buying land, originally acquired by the government, for the Pune-Mumbai highway near Lonavala and reselling it to one of its sister concern. The CBI is investigating the case based on the complaint filed by RTI activist Satish Shetty who had highlighted the Lonavala land grabbing case before he was stabbed to death in 2010.
“The charge sheet pertains to a case of land scam involving officials of IRB, farmers and agents. The land meant for the Pune-Mumbai expressway and acquired by the government. Later, Aryan Infrastructure Investments Private Limited, farmers and agents fprged land documents and resold it to IRB,” CBI counsel Vijaykumar Dhakane told Hindustan Times over the phone.
Based on the information obtained under RTI, Shetty filed a case of cheating, criminal conspiracy and forgery at Lonavala city police station against Mhaiskar and 12 others. Days after filing the complaint, Shetty was stabbed to death by an unidentified person near his house in Talegaon.
Shetty in his complaint had alleged that land acquisition conducted by the state government for the Pune-Mumbai expressway was marred by discrepancies. According to Shetty, the land acquired by the government was resold to Aryan Infrastructure, an IRB sister concern.
While the case was initially closed, the agency after taking over the case, moved the Bombay High Court on August 8, 2014, seeking permission to reopen the land scam case. The CBI while seeking to reopen the case told HC that it could be linked to Shetty’s murder.
In January 2015, CBI conducted searches at 21 residential and office premises of IRB and its senior officials in Mumbai and Pune. The CBI officials claimed that during the raids, the agency seized some incriminating material.
In its statement, IRB said, “Based on the preliminary review of the charge sheet, it appears that the charge sheet focuses on an alleged conspiracy to attempt to cheat for acquiring certain land parcels belonging to the government/MSRDC. We deny all allegations made against Mr Mhaiskar, Mr Gadgil, AIIPL and the company in this matter will seek appropriate remedies under law.”
The Company said its officials have been fully cooperating with the authorities during the course of the investigation and have provided all information and documents upon request.