Clean chit for Shinde in Adarsh scam

The CBI gave Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde a clean chit in the Adarsh Housing Society scam and told the Bombay high court that it did not find any evidence that could suggest that the minister abused his position to secure membership of the controversial society for a person known to him.
The CBI filed its reply before a division bench of Justice P.V. Hardas and P.N. Deshmukh.
“There is nothing on record to suggest that Sushikumar Shinde has insisted 51 more members by rechecking/substituting ineligible members before possession of the land to be given to the society, which resulted in addition of illegal benami members (sic),” states the affidavit filed by the investigating agency.
The CBI filed this affidavit in response to an application filed by activist Pravin Wategaonkar as part of his PIL, seeking a probe by the Enforcement Directorate and income-tax department against Mr Shinde.
Mr Wategaonkar’s plea stated that the Union minister had suggested that Major N. Khankhoje be included as a member of the housing society. This was also stated by former legislator Kanhaiyalal Gidwani during his deposition before the Adarsh Commission probing the housing scam.
“Khankhoje’s membership may have been pursued by K.L. Gidwani, but it cannot be confirmed as Gidwani has passed away. The CBI chargesheet states that civilian members in the society were included at the instance of Gidwani,” the affidavit reads. The affidavit filed by senior CBI official K. Babu also states that the investigation conducted by CBI does not reveal any familial relationship between Khankhoje and Mr Shinde. “There is nothing on record to substantiate the deposition made by Gidwani to the commission that Khankhoje was included by Sushilkumar Shinde,” it states.
“The respondent do not feel it legally necessary to name Sushilkumar Shinde as an accused person in the ongoing investigation being carried out by the respondent,” it further adds. The CBI had filed a chargesheet against 13 persons, including former chief minister Ashok Chavan, in the Adarsh scam.
Though two other former chief ministers — Mr Shinde and Mr Vilasrao Deshmukh — were also under its scanner for various clearances, according to the housing society, they were not made accused in the case in which top retired army officers and public servants faced charges.

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