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As reported by Prafulla Marpakwar in timesofindia.indiatimes.com on 05 December 2010: Adarsh row: Babus may be told to go - The Times of India Adarsh row: Babus may be told to go MUMBAI: Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan is likely to ask both information commissioner Ramanand Tiwari and human rights commission member Subhash Lalla to step down after their names figured in the multi-crore Adarsh Cooperative Housing Society scam. Lalla, who has denied his involvement, has proceeded on long leave. "Under the legal provisions, the state government does not have the powers to remove them. Chavan will use his good offices and request them to step down on moral grounds. If they don't, the government will not hesitate to ask the governor to initiate steps for their removal," a senior official told TOI on Saturday. While many other bureaucrats have been caught in the Adarsh scam net, Tiwari and Lalla hold constitutional posts, thus making their offence graver. According to official records, Tiwari's son Omkar and Lalla's mother and daughter have been allotted flats in Adarsh. Tiwari was urban development secretary when the Adarsh file was processed while Lalla was secretary to the then chief minister. "We thought that after Ashok Chavan was sacked, most of the bureaucrats would withdraw from the membership of Adarsh on their own. Since that did not happen, the CM has stepped in to clean up the bureaucracy," the source said. As per the CM's directives, letters have been sent to 18 officials, including former BMC commissioner J M Phatak, former director of education J M Abhyankar, Tiwari and Lalla to submit information on their source of funds and whether they had intimated the government before acquiring flat in Adarsh.
ajaykpr posted a question in Ask for Non RTI Supporthi, I want to know all schemes that govt. is providing for development of poor and hungry areas of country. What are schemes for physically disabled persons
Atul Patankar posted a topic in RTI in MediaAs reported by Yogesh Sadhwani at mumbaimirror.com on November 24, 2009 After waiting for two years for a house under the chief minister’s discretionary housing quota scheme when a driver filed a Right To Information query, he unearthed a scam in the scheme. He found that the father of a desk officer in the Urban Development Department (UDD) which handles the scheme, has been allotted a house at a concessional rate under it, while applications of several deserving citizens have been kept on hold. Tanaji Waghmare recently filed a complaint with the UDD with a bunch of documents obtained under the RTI Act. The documents show how Balasaheb Nikam, a round officer with the Forest Department, a class three post, has been allotted a 560 square feet house in a complex at Ambernath at a concessional rate under the scheme. Nikam happens to be the father of Chetan Nikam, a desk officer in the UDD. While a government servant can apply for a house under the scheme as long as he meets all the criteria, the documents that he submitted are under the scanner. While applying for the house, Nikam had declared that his family income is less than Rs 1.5 lakh per annum, as is mandatory under the scheme. He has also submitted an affidavit saying he does not own a house in any major district in Maharashtra, another requirement. However, Mumbai Mirror has documents that state Nikam owns a house in Pimple Saudagar area in Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation limits. “While Balasaheb Nikam’s sole income is less than Rs 1.5 lakh, his family income is well above that, as at least two of his sons are working, one in Mantralaya itself - with an income of over Rs 15,000 per month,” said a UDD official. The UDD is conducting an inquiry into the case. Also under the scanner, is an income certificate issued by the Tehsildar of Khed, as he has not been able to submit the documents on the basis of which the income was certified. TC Benjamin, principal secretary of UDD said, “Since the allegations are of serious nature, pending inquiry, we have shunted Chetan Nikam to another department. If it is found that the house was illegally given out at a concessional rate, not only will the allotment be cancelled but severe action will be taken against the desk officer. He is not a confirmed employee of Mantralaya,” he said. Nikam said he stays separately with his wife and hence his income was less than Rs 1.5 lakh per annum. However, he could not explain why his sons are also listed on the same ration card as his. “They have separated from me and their income is their own,” said Nikam speaking from Khed. “I owned a house earlier but now I have sold it. So technically, I am homeless and eligible for the house under chief minister’s scheme,” he said. Waghmare’s battle Tanaji Waghmare, who filed a complaint with the UDD recently. Inset: The Royal Park complex at Ambernath where the flat has been alloted Tanaji Waghmare applied for a house under the scheme in 2007. “I met the chief minister twice. He instructed his staff to allot me a house. I submitted all the documents and was asked to wait patiently. In December 2008, when the houses were allotted, my name was not included but Balasaheb Nikam’s was,” said an irked Waghmare. He found that Balasaheb was desk officer Chetan Nikam’s father. He then obtained documents under RTI and filed a complaint with the UDD. “I have asked for the names of others who have been allotted houses in the last few years. I am certain that this is just the tip of the ice berg and there are many such cases,” concluded Waghmare. Source: Driver uses RTI, unearths scam in CM?s housing quota scheme, News - City - Mumbai Mirror,Mumbai Mirror
Atul Patankar posted a topic in RTI in MediaAs reported by Viju B at timesofindia.indiatimes.com on 14 September 2009 MUMBAI: The urban development department has been sitting on the inquiry report submitted by the state-appointed committee that investigated the causes of the Laxmi Chhaya building collapse for the past 22 months, a Right to Information (RTI) query has revealed. The Laxmi Chhaya building in Borivli collapsed on July 19, 2007, killing 30 residents. The flowchart procured from the urban development department revealed that the inquiry report went through 21 officials and finally reached the office of the chief minister__who heads the ministry__after seven long months. This showed, said the RTI activist who filed the query, the government was not serious about pursuing the matter or taking steps to prevent such incidents. The government-appointed committee probed the collapse of the seven-storey building and submitted its report to the state urban development department in three months. The report was lying with the section officer of the urban development department. "Even after I filed the RTI query in April 2008, asking for the copy of the report, the file did not move,'' said RTI activist S K Nangia. The flowchart showed that the file was first moved on August 13, 2008 and passing from one official to another, it finally reached the CM's office on March 12, 2009. "The report has been pending with the CM's office ever since,'' says Nangia."The fact that there was one more major building collapse this year__Yusuf Manzil__shows that the ghost of Laxmi Chaya won't go away soon.'' The RTI activist procured the information after a 10-month struggle with the state urban development department. He had filed the query last October. Both the public information officer (PIO) and the appellate authority reportedly denied him information. "I had asked for a copy of the report and that of a flowchart showing how the file was transferred from one level of the department to the other. But they released the copies of the report and the flowchart only after I filed a complaint with the state chief information commissioner Suresh Joshi,'' Nangia says. Joshi imposed a penalty on the PIO, Rajesh Govil, of the urban development department for delaying the data and shuttling the RTI query from the municipal commissioner's office to the urban department. Source: RTI: State sitting on Laxmi Chhaya report for 22 mths - Mumbai - City - NEWS - The Times of India