Mumbai: CBI on Monday registered a
Preliminary Enquiry (PE) in Mumbai Housing Society scam in
connection with the alleged role of former and serving Army
officers, apparently not exercising the option of a regular
case for the moment.
A CBI spokesman said in a statement today that a PE had
been registered against unknown people on a complaint by the
Defence Minister A K Antony had on Tuesday last
announced a CBI probe into the scam involving Adarsh
Cooperative Housing Society in which some senior military
officers including former army chiefs Gen Deepak Kapoor and
Gen N C Vij and ex-naval chief Admiral Madhavendra Singh had
flats allotted in their names. The 3 ex-chiefs have since
said they are surrendering their flats.
"After PE, if prima facie evidence of criminality is
found, regular case will be registered," the CBI spokesman
The Defence Ministry has among other things requested
CBI to look into issues concerning No Objection Certificate,
relinquishment of the land in possession of Army and the
extent to which commitments for welfare of defence personnel
were complied with.
The registering of PE by the CBI in place of a regular
case has surprised observers especially when Maharashtra Chief
Miniser Ashok Chavan lost his job within days of the scam
coming to light.
Under PE, the CBI cannot effect any seizure of
documents or arrest any person.
CBI, which had made an in-house investigations into the
case following complaints since October, had apprised the
officials at its headquarters about the findings from the
documents received from several departments, the sources said.
It had sought documents relating to the Society from
various departments of the government, Indian Navy and Army
and the Society, the sources added.
"While we had received over 4,000-page documents from
the city collector`s office, the Society members have sent us
a letter requesting more time to submit the documents. We have
also received documents from other departments," a senior CBI
Adarsh Housing Society members` lawyer Satish
Maneshinde had said "we have given certain documents to CBI
and have sought further time to submit the remaining. We have
also written to MMRDA officials asking them to take back the
notice revoking the occupancy certificate of the society.
"The notice violated principles of natural justice. The
building was constructed legally and necessary sanction had
been granted by authorities including the MMRDA."
The plush housing Society, built on prime defence land,
has been constructed in alleged violation of rules. The
building was originally meant to be a six-storey structure to
house Kargil war heroes and their kin but was later extended
to 31 floors without mandatory permission.