Mumbai – November 3 Protest Against Adarsh & Other Land Scams

November 2, 2010

3rd Nov. 2010. Azad Maidan, 12 o’clock onwards

You all are aware of the misdeeds of our politicians, bureaucrats & officials who have not even left martyrs to further their unholy designs of grabbing land. To challenge their nexus and corrupt practices a protest is being organized at Azad Maidain tomorrow from 1pm till 6 pm.

We, call upon you to kindly join in to register your protest to the land grab and ask for action against all those who are guilty for Adarsh and other such scams.

In Solidarity,

Santosh Thorat , Jammela Begum, Sumit Wajale, Raju Bhai, Nasrin Bano,
Simpreet Singh, Akhilesh, Hyder Imam, Santosh Daonkar,
Amit Maru, Atik, Siraj, Nirmala

(For details contact at 8976252804, 9892727063, 9821943920)
Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan-NAPM

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NATIONAL ALLIANCE OF PEOPLE’S MOVEMENTS

Press Release 1 Nov 2010

· To punish the culprits involved in the Adarsh Co-operative Society, an Independent Inquiry Commission required.

· Will the State get a Chief Minister free from the builder nexus, representing the residents of the state?

· Pro-Builder housing schemes and projects should be abolished and instead public projects for housing to be taken up.

The recent Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society scam has exposed the corrupt nexus amongst the politicians and the bureaucrats in order to grab land in Mumbai. In Mumbai while the working class and the poor slum dwellers have to struggle for their housing as well as livelihood, the scam expose also points towards the reasons that why the issues of poor are ignored and not taken care of by the administration. The corrupt nexus that operates amongst the politicians, the bureaucrats and the builders not allows them to take any pro poor decision and thus the only option left before the poor is to expose such land scams and challenge the State over their double standards.

The Adarsh CHS scam exposed by availing information under RTI Act and the complaint filed on 27 August 2008 with the Department of Defence, Government of Maharashtra, Department of Environment, BMC forced the Ministry of Defence to initiate the enquiry and order investigation. The Department of Environment, Maharashtra too had to serve a notice to the Adarsh Co-operative Society demanding that all the permissions received by them should be submitted within 15 days, on date 3rd Nov 2009 but no action has been taken till date. This must be inquired into that why no action has been taken till date and the building be declared illegal in the meeting to be held on 3rd Nov.

The land scam is related to allotment of Land at Colaba that was in possession of the Army and after the Kargil War, few army personnel started demanding the land for the building of flats to “accommodate and reward the hero’s of Kargil operation and those who had laid down their lives for the protection of the motherland”. The initial list of society members comprised of 40 members and included all the defence personnel. Presently the list stands at 103 out of which only 37 members belong to army and that too only 3 members are related to Kargil war.

The following concessions were given to the Society:

· The reservation of the plot modified from Transit Camp & a Parade Ground to Residential Zone.

· A road of width 60 meters reduced to 19 meters.

· FSI of the adjoining Bus Depot given to the Adarsh Society.

· 15 % of the area allowed to be used for commercial purpose rather than residential.

· The income ceiling of Rs 12,500 per month waived off for army personnel and politicians

· Construction started without obtaining environmental clearance.

· Occupation Certificate awarded even before the building was fully ready.

All these relaxations and concessions were given as it was mentioned every time that the building was for the war widows are for the army personnel who served the mother land, but the fact remains that out of the total of 103 members only 3 are Kargil soldiers, thus the land was taken in the name of the martyrs and used for personnel benefit of the bureaucrats and politicians.which is a offence under PCAS sect 13-1 d-i

The scam was exposed to prove and to challenge the corrupt nexus of the builders-politicians-bureaucrats who order the demolition of the houses of the poor slum dwellers saying that they are illegal and are encroachers while they themselves encroach over land meant for the widows. This is deplorable and shocking. It is also pertinent to note that Adarsh is not an isolated case but falls in the long list of land scams including Atria Shopping mall, 60 storied building, Hiranadani scam, Golibar land transfer of 160 acres including 60 acres of Defence land. The politicians and the bureaucrats whose names have been disclosed have no moral right in continuing with the offices they hold and also demand that criminal cases be file against all those involved in the scam for cheating and engaging in corrupt practices.

If the UPA government does not take action and punish the guilty politicians and bureaucrats then it would be considered that it too does support them and is party to the crime. For this an independent inquiry commission should be appointed immediately. Also the state government should frame a policy for allotment and transfer of government land. The expose of LAVASA has also clearly proved beyond doubt that how the land is transferred illegally and shockingly the same officials who are involved in LAVASA like PV Deshmukh are involved in Adarsh. In Lavasa even after the expose of the scam, with documentary evidence, no action ahs been taken by the Government of Maharashtra and instead they have ordered for its regularization, which is totally illegal and further expose the role of the politicians and bureaucrats in LAVASA.

In the above context the following questions are to be answered by the state government as well as UPA to the citizens of this country:

1. How could permission be given to construct housing on land that was in possession of the Army and was located in CRZ area.

2. Why was the permission was given to deserve the DP reservation of Parade Ground, Transit Camp & 60 mts road?

3. Will the UPA govt take action those politicians and bureaucrats that are responsible for grabbing the flats meant for army personnel & Kargil martyrs or will cover their mis deeds.

4. Why the GoM(Collector) mislead the Dept of Defence while answering in the matter of a starred question raised related to allotment of land to Adarsh society vide their letter dated 12/7/2004.

5. Why they are not ordering the probe of all the land scams related to slums in Mumbai including Golibar, BKC, Hiranandani, Sathe Nagar etc which are leading to demolitions of slums.

NAPM demands that:

· It is the time UPA should review and deliberate on its anti poor policies including SRA Scheme and investigate all the land and housing scams exposed by the people’s organizations and should stop all the demolitions of the poor and laboring classes in the name that the houses are illegal and an encroachment.

· UPA should immediately accept the resignation of the CM and instead it does appoint someone who is anti-corruption, free of builder raj and pro poor.

· UPA should also direct the state government to implement the schemes for self reliant housing including BSUP & Rajiv Awas Yojana.

Medha Patkar
Suniti SR
Simpreet Singh