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Army probing Adarsh Housing Society row in Mumbai

Source: PTI
October 27, 2010 21:19 IST
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The Army said on Wednesday that it is carrying out an inquiry into Mumbai's Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society row in which a high-rise building has been constructed in alleged violation of rules with beneficiaries being former services chiefs, politicians and bureaucrats.

"As far as we are concerned, the inquiry is on and I would not like to comment beyond this as it may hamper the inquiry," Army chief General V K Singh told reporters on the sidelines of a function in Delhi.

Former Army chiefs General N C Vij and General Deepak Kapoor, ex-Navy chief Admiral Madhavendra Singh, former Army Vice Chief Lieutenant General Shantanu Chowdhary, former Union Minister and Shiv Sena MP Suresh Prabhu are among those who have been alloted flats in the 31-storey building in upscale Colaba area.

Asked if the inquiry was being conducted by the CBI, Singh said, "If you want to know about the CBI inquiry, ask the (defence) ministry. We are trying to find out at our own level that if there is anything wrong in this whole issue."

The Army chief's statement comes after Defence Minister A K Antony said the government was "seriously examining" the matter. The Navy has objected to Maharashtra government according permission for Occupation Certificate citing serious security concerns.

The 100-metre tall building next to a planned helipad and military installations has violated the Coastal Regulation Zone limit of a height of 30 metres, the Navy had said. In Mumbai, State environment minister Suresh Shetty said Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh had in a letter to the Maharashtra Government sought details of clearances for the building.

"Accordingly, the state Environment secretary has written to the Urban Development Department seeking details of clearances given by the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM)," Shetty said.

The society, built on a 6,490 sq mt plot in the Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) II, was also initially promoted as housing for war veterans and widows.

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