In an interim order in response to a CBI petition, the Bombay High Court today stayed the prosecution of former Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan in the Adarsh housing society scam. CBI has challenged the lower court's refusal to end criminal prosecution of Chavan. Justice Sadhana Jadhav, while staying the prosecution against the Congress leader, clarified that the trial of other accused in the case can proceed.
The High Court will hear the petition again next week. The special CBI court, in January this year, turned down CBI's plea to drop Chavan's name from the first information report (FIR). CBI had filed the application after Maharashtra Governor refused sanction to prosecute Chavan, on the ground that there was not much evidence against him. Chavan had stepped down as the Chief Minister after the Adarsh scam came to light in 2010.
CBI, in the FIR, had accused Chavan of approving additional floor space index for Adarsh in return for two flats for his relatives. He was also charged with illegally approving, as the revenue minister, allotment of 40 per cent of the flats to civilians when the society was allegedly meant only for Kargil war widows and defence personnel.