The Bombay High Court on Thursday said it would hear the application filed by a social activist seeking for Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde to be arraigned as an accused in the Adarsh housing society scam after the CBI finishes its probe into benami transactions.
Social activist Pravin Wategaonkar had in his application sought for Shinde to be included as an accused in the case as he allegedly owns benami flats in the plush 31-storey Adarsh building in south Mumbai.
According to Wategaonkar's application Shinde had suggested inclusion of late Major N W Khankhoje as a member of the Adarsh society.
"Former MLC Kanhaiyalal Gidwani had deposed before the Adarsh commission that Shinde had asked for inclusion of Khankhoje as member. Khankhoje's son Kiran told the commission that his father had not mentioned anything about the Adarsh flat in his will. The CBI should be asked to look into the relations between the Khankhoje family and Shinde," Wategaonkar argued.
He added that the Enforcement Directorate should also be asked to look into the money trail.
CBI counsel Hiten Venegaonkar told the court that the agency was till investigating into the benami transactions of all the 103 members of the society.
A division bench of Justices PV Hardas and PN Deshmukh then said it would hear this application only after the investigations are over. "Since the investigation is pending we will keep this application also pending," the court said adjourning the matter to November 26.
Earlier the CBI in its affidavit in reply to the application had given a clean chit to Shinde and said there was not sufficient evidence to show that he misused his official position.
Meanwhile, the court asked the CBI to file an affidavit in reply to an application filed by former journalist Ketan Tirodkar alleging that certain people are influencing the probe into benami transactions.
"There are several flats purchased by persons who are frontmen for a cabinet minister of Maharashtra. Since long the CBI has been sitting on several discoveries made by them during probe but has not initiated any action. The reason behind this is influence by someone," the application states.