Adarsh Scam : Congress on back-foot as Governor orders prosecution of Ashok Chavan
The infamous Adarsh Housing scam has come back to haunt the Congress party in Maharashtra. In a huge setback to former Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, the Maharashtra Governor C Vidyasagar Rao gave sanction to the CBI to prosecute Chavan in the Adarsh scam case.
This development comes just days after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) recently arrested former MP Sameer Bhujbal, nephew of NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal, in a money laundering case in Mumbai. The arrest though was criticised by NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, who accused the BJP government of Devendra Fadnavis of blatantly misusing its power
The CBI had approached the Maharashtra governor seeking sanction to prosecute Chavan in connection with the Adarsh Housing Society corruption case in late January.
In December 2013, the then Governor K Sankaranarayan had refused sanction to CBI to prosecute Chavan in the Adarsh housing scam, leaving the agency with no choice but to close the case against him. Chavan, who had to resign as Chief Minister after the scam surfaced in 2010, was among the 12 persons who were chargesheeted by the agency in connection with the case.
CBI had alleged that Chavan suggested inclusion of civilian members in Adarsh Housing Society meant for war veterans and widows of defence personnel, to secure flats for his relatives. CBI had first approached a trial court seeking to drop Chavan’s name as an accused on the ground that the Governor had refused to sanction his prosecution. As the CBI court rejected it, the agency moved the Bombay High Court.