Four men accused in the Mumbai Adrash housing scam were given bail Tuesday by a special court after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) made fresh arrests in the multi-crore-rupee scandal.
Those released on bail are former Congress lawmaker Kanhaiyalal Gidwani, his son Kailash, tax consultant J.K. Jagiasi and former CBI counsel Mandar Goswami. They were arrested March 5 and were granted bail on personal bond of Rs.50,000 each.
The court warned them not to tamper with evidence, cooperate in investigations and appear before the CBI regularly in connection with the case.
The CBI earlier Monday arrested retired defence estates officer R.C. Thakur, retired brigadier M.M. Wanchoo and former deputy secretary of state urban development department P.V. Deshmukh for their alleged involvement in the scam.
The scam involves a prime plot in south Mumbai’s Colaba on which a 31-storey building was constructed by a housing society. The plot was meant for constructing houses for the families of soldiers who died serving the nation during the 1999 Kargil war.
However, the flats in the tall building were given to bureaucrats, politicians and senior defence officials.
The Bombay High court March 12 rapped CBI for not initiating action against government officials involved in the scam.
A division bench of the Bombay High Court had also castigated the Enforcement Directorate for “serious lapse” in failing to initiate investigations against some Adarsh society members allegedly involved in money-laundering.
The scam claimed the job of former chief minister Ashok Chavan after allegations surfaced of collusion between bureaucrats and politicians to corner flats in the building. The flats were originally meant for widows and heroes of the 1999 Kargil conflict.
Another former chief minister, Vilasrao Dekshmukh, has also been accused of allotting flats meant for war veterans to their relatives. Deshmukh is currently the science and technology minister at the centre.
The CBI has filed an FIR against 15 people in the case. The chargesheet in the case is, however, pending.