CAG report on Adarsh indicts Maharashtra govt, defence establishment

CAG report on Adarsh indicts Maharashtra govt, defence establishment

New Delhi: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India took to task the Maharashtra government, the army and the defence ministry for “dereliction of duty and severe lack of probity and accountability" over irregularities related to the Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society in Mumbai.

In its report tabled in parliament today, CAG indicated the possibility of a nexus involving politicians, bureaucrats and army officials in the so-called Adarsh society scam, which forced the resignation of then Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan in November last year.

The CAG’s findings show that the society built on the army land and originally formed to help servicemen, ex-servicemen and their widows received several concessions ignoring rules. Officials and politicians instrumental in the decision making became members of the society.

“The facts of the case gathered from records of government of Maharashtra as also Defence Estates Office Mumbai conclusively prove that the land was in possession of the army, a fact that the officials of government of Maharashtra and Defence Estates Office should have been aware of, but probably chose to ignore," CAG said in a press release. “Son of the GOC (general office in command) and the defence estates officer who gave the certificates were members of the proposed society."

CAG said “significant concessions" were extended to the society by the government of Maharashtra.

“Many officers -- both civilian and services -- who were dealing with the case and were instrumental in taking those decisions, eventually became members of the society," the CAG report said. “In some cases, relations of these officers became the members."

The release mentioned a note from the then principal secretary to the chief minister and approved by Chavan that allegedly helped the society get additional floor space index, required for building more floors. Besides this, the release said the building violated the permitted height as well as the environment laws.