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ED issues notices to Adarsh Society, members

Mumbai: In fresh trouble for members of the scam-tainted Adarsh Housing Society, which is already under CBI probe, the Enforcement Directorate has issued notices to the Society and its members asking them to furnish information regarding payment towards the purchase of flats.

The ED began its probe into allegations of money laundering and benami transactions after facing severe criticism from the Bombay High Court for failing to initiate inquiry into the scam despite receiving information from CBI. The High Court, while hearing a PIL, had come down heavily on ED for not initiating inquiry into allegations of benami transactions.

Following this, the agency issued summons to the members of the Society directing them to furnish information regarding purchase of flats in the 31-storey plush Society in south Mumbai and mode of payment, ED sources said. While some members had furnished the replies, others were still awaited, the sources said, adding that those arrested by the CBI had sought more time to comply to the notices. Those arrested include Society`s secretary R C Thakur, retired brigadier M M Wanchoo, former Congress MLC Kanhaiyalal Gidwani and Pradeep Vyas, former Mumbai collector.

The ED had earlier told the High Court while submitting a status report that it was probing if any offence under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) was committed by any members and if any flat was purchased through proceeds of crime. The CBI, which registered a case in January last year against 14 people, has so far arrested nine persons including IAS officers Jairaj Phatak and Ramanand Tiwari, retired Major generals A R Kumar and T K Kaul and P V Deshmukh, a former deputy secretary in the Urban department.

The remaining five accused are former Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, former principal secretary to the chief minister Subhash Lala, retired Col T K Sinha, retired brigadier P K Rampal and retired deputy GOC R C Sharma.

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