Sushil Kumar Shinde has benami flat in Adarsh Society, claims PIL

A social activist today moved the Bombay High Court seeking direction to the CBI that it should make Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde an accused in the Adarsh Society scam case, because he allegedly owns a benami flat in the controversial building.

Pravin Wategaonkar, who has filed a public interest litigation alleging money-laundering by Adarsh's members, and sought a probe by Enforcement Directorate alongside the CBI, today filed the application targeting Shinde.

According to Wategaonkar, Shinde, as Maharashtra Chief Minister, handled Adarsh files, and has a benami flat in the plush 31-storey building in south Mumbai.

Sushil Kumar Shinde
Sushil Kumar Shinde

Shinde suggested inclusion of Major N Khankhoje as a member of the Society, Wategaonkar says, adding that former MLC and member of the Society Kanhaiyalal Gidwani had corroborated this fact before the Adarsh inquiry commission.

"Captain Kiran Khankhoje, son of the late Major, also deposed before the commission and said that when his father applied for Adarsh's membership, he (Kiran) was to make all the payments. However, his father was not found financially independent and was held ineligible for membership," the application states.

Despite this, Shinde asked the Society to make Khankhoje a member, the application says. Further, it points out that Kiran told the commission that his father's will did not mention anything about the flat in Adarsh society.

The petition demands that ED probe the money trail in respect of payments made by/on behalf of Khankhoje for the flat which would "reveal the true owner".

The application is likely to be heard on July 8.

Adarsh, originally meant for families of Kargil war heroes, is facing accusations of violations of environmental norms. Besides, several bureaucrats and politicians stand accused of grabbing flats in the society.

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