For More Info Log on to

Google Groups Subscribe to RTI Group
Browse Archives at

Monday, November 29, 2010

SIC Ramanand Tiwari involved in Adarsh-type scams in Mumbai & Pune

Maharashtra’s State Information Commissioner Ramanand Tiwari played a crucial role in two more land scams in Mumbai & Pune involving high ranking bureaucrats, politicians and their aides. One may term them as Adarsh-II and Adarsh-III. Also read about another scam in Wadala, which we may call Adarsh-IV, where Mr Tiwari’s hand, if present, is not clear.


Ashok Chavan’s aides usurped plot in Bandra meant for displaced families to build a private housing society; but disturbingly, main promoter D P Sawant, a Congress MLA, was sworn in as a Minister of State in Prithviraj Chavan’s government.

Other housing societies are tumbling out of Ashok Chavan’s closet. It has emerged that a piece of land in Bandra (East), meant for displaced residents, was usurped six months ago by bureaucrats and politicians close to the former Chief Minister. The four-acre plot, taken from the government for a small fraction of its market value, now houses Renuka Co-operative Housing Society, where the residents include several senior IAS officers, two of Chavan’s former secretaries, his brother-in-law Gulabrao Bhoyas, and State Information Commissioner Ramanand Tiwari.

Original news item:

The society consists of 2 BHK and 3 BHK flats, valued between Rs 2 and Rs 5 crore by local real-estate agents. They were, however, sold to Renuka’s privileged residents for Rs 20 to Rs 30 lakh. The move to take over this plot first began in 2004, but the owners started moving in only in May 2010. The entire project came up without any formal application before the BMC’s Improvement Committee to change the status of the plot from ‘dis-housed’ to ‘residential’.

This, at a time when the corporation desperately needs 25,000 houses to accommodate families affected due to projects such as BRIMSTOWAD (storm-water draining), road widening, nullah widening, and rehabilitation of slum-dwellers living near water pipelines. Construction began in 2004 on the plot measuring 1,389 sq metre. Violating Section 33 (1 & 2), a file was sent to the BMC seeking permission, but not forwarded to the Improvement Committee for approval. Despite no formal sanction from the corporation, and therefore no paper trail, the building was completed last year, and interior work was finished this summer.

“The state government has the right not to take a decision on changing the status of a plot on its own. At that time, Urban Development principal secretary Ramanand Tiwari played vital role in helping develop the society. The BMC got no wind of it,” said a senior civic official. Tiwari himself allegedly owns a flat in the building, but when contacted by Mumbai Mirror, denied that he had anything to do with the society. “If they say I own a house there, I will sue the society,” he said. BJP MLC Vinod Tawde, however, insisted that the former bureaucrat was one of the society’s members. “I have procured documents from the Registrar’s office, and Mr Tiwari’s name is very much there,” he claimed.

Other members of Renuka society include Nitin Kareer, Ashok Chavan’s chief secretary; Satish Sawant, personal assistant to the ex-CM; Shailesh Patil, son of former Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil; Vipin Gupchup, PA of Sushil Kumar Shinde; Ajay Bhushan Pande, the serving energy secretary; and Ramakant Asamar, a joint secretary in the State Revenue department.

Asamar confirmed he had a 3 BHK flat in Renuka. “But we’ve relocated a portion of the plot for dishoused people at another location. We’ve not done anything wrong,” he contended.

When contacted, retired IPS officer and social activist, Y P Singh, alleged that members of the Renuka society had not only illegally changed the reservation status of the plot but also shifted the direction of a nullah that passes nearby. “As per Section 22 of Maharashta Regional Town-Planning Act, reservations are created as per the requirement of the city and its development needs. An individual need of a private society cannot supersede the development of the city,” Singh said.

Rahul Shewale, chairman of the BMC’s standing committee, said they would immediately look into matter, and prepare a report seeking to reclaim the plot. “Without consulting us, houses meant for displaced people have been given to top politicians and bureaucrats at a throwaway price. All people involved should be booked and action should be taken against them,” he said.


29 senior IAS officials and junior bureaucrats grabbed government land consisting of five acres and formed the Gayatri Cooperative Housing Society. The vacant land belonged to the former Food Craft Institute (FCI), now Maharashtra State Institute Hotel Management and Catering (MSIHMAC), which is a state government institution. The land was allotted to the institution to construct a ladies hostel and sports complex. As the state government was reeling under financial crisis in 2004, funds for the building were withheld.

Original news item:

The bureaucrats took advantage of a legal loophole that government land must be utilized within two years or the government would reclaim it back. They then came together with bureaucrats from the secretariat and, without the knowledge of the institution, took control of the land by dubious means. Though the bureaucrats managed to get an order in favor of the Gayatri Society floated by them, it was quashed by the then Divisional Commissioner P. D. Karandikar.

Now Karandikar, who had ordered the land grabbed by bureaucrats to be returned to the institution, says, “I have unconfirmed information that the Government in Department of Higher & Technical Education (DTE) have informed the Revenue Department that the land in question is not likely to be utilized by them for expansion of the Hotel Management Institute (for want of budgetary provision). This would pave the way for floating another Co-op Housing Society on the same plot. Official information on this can be obtained by Research and Technical Institute application.”


Ramanand Tiwari's wife Sheela Tiwari, also an IAS officer, acquired a stake in this housing society, when Ramanand was secretary of Urban Development in 2004. List of society members acquired under RTI from Deputy Registrar of Cooperative Society in Pune:

1. Satish Tripati - Mumbai

2. Rakesh Chandra Joshi, Mumbai

3- Subash Lalla (Chairman State Human Rights Commission), Mumbai

4. Sanjay Ubale, former Secretary GAD, Mumbai

5. Mahesh Pathak, Mumbai

6. Smt. Sheela Ramanand Tiwari, Mumbai (W/O Ramanand Tiwari)

7. Jawale HK, Mumbi

8. Vikas Deshmukh, Mumbai

9. Sanjay Radkar, Mumbai

10. Rajiv Nivatkar, Mumbai

11. Avinash Dhakne, Mumbai

12. S.G.Deshmukh, Pune

13. Anil Diggikar, former Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Commissioner, Pune

14. V. Radha, Secretary, Women and Child Development, Mumbai

15. Umakant Dangat, former Additional Collector, Pune

16. D.G. Rajurkar, former Deputy Municipal Commissioner, PMC, Pune,

17, Swati-Mhase-Patil, Pune

18. Suhas Diwase, former Resident Deputy Collector, Pune

19. Sharad Jadhav, Pune

20. Kavita Diwvedi, Pune,

21. Suraj Mandhare, Miraj, Sangli

22. Kishore More, Chief Promoter, former deputy collector and Private Secretary to

Minister of Tourism, Mumbai

23. Ajiyanka Padwal, former Additonal Collector, Pune,

24. Sampath Davkar, former deputy collector, Pune and OSD to Minister Patangrao Kadam

25. Smt. Deepali Khade, Pune

26. Vipin Gupchup, Pune

27. D.P. Metke

28. Ashok Mulchandani, Pimpri, Pune

29. Jungle Wagh

Names of former PMC Commissoner Nitin Kareer and Government Pleader Amar Mulchandani also figure in the government list. (Nitin Kareer is said to be instrumental in allotting government land in the Sasson General Hospital to controversial NGO Sofosh.)

In spite of the then Divisional Commissioner Bapu Karandikar directing the collector to return the government land back to the owners MSIHMAC, the IAS officers have not yet given up their claim and are creating obstruction in the handing over the land. All the 29 members had paid their share capital of Rs. 250.

Shahid Burney, who lives in Pune (094220 12831, ), has a dossier of documents about Gayatri society, and also Indus Society which is mentioned below.


To purchase flats at exceptional concession rates, bureaucrats in the state secretariat bargained to clear files, adding their own people to the original list with the Finance Department. Indus was promoted by some IAS officers who were later joined by IPS officers, senior government servants and legislators from the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council. This resulted in the members’ list rising to 135 plus. The promoters applied for land at Wadala with the government giving its willingness to allot 13,000 square meters of land.

After the government agreed to the allotment of the land, it dawned on the promoters that the land was near the sea shore and was thus covered under the provisions of the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification, making them eligible to use only 7,000 square meters, which was nearly half of the actual land allotted by the government. This compelled the promoters to reduce the membership to 92 and they provided this list to the Mumbai Collector, who further reduced it to about 70 members saying that most of the members were not eligible. As the land was reduced, the building could only accommodate 82 members for 1,000 square feet flats.

As the file began moving in all the secretariat departments, politicians also demanded a share in the society to clear the proposal.

Currently, it is thought that Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, taking a lesson from the Adarsh housing scam, may delete names of some politicians and bureaucrats or delay the allotment of land to Indus Society.

Warm Regards,


No comments: