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Chhagan Bhujbal acquitted

Maharashtra Sadan scam: Six more acquitted

Mumbai: A special court set up under the Prevention of Bribery (ACB) Act on Thursday acquitted Food and Civil Supplies Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, his son Pankaj and nephew Sameer in the Maharashtra Sadan scam.

The ACB alleges that when Bhujbal was the Public Works Minister, he handed over the work of Maharashtra Sadan to Chamankar Enterprises without inviting tenders. The Enforcement Directorate is also investigating the matter.

Seven people, including Bhujbal, had claimed that there was no evidence to prosecute him. All the allegations against them are false and based on false assumptions and assumptions. Although the ACB has filed thousands of pages of chargesheet against them in this case, there is not enough evidence to prosecute them, the Bhujbal family claimed. The ACB had claimed that Bhujbal and his family had taken bribe from Chamankar Enterprises. The contractors had got 80 per cent profit for the construction of Maharashtra Sadan. On the contrary, according to a government circular, such contractors were entitled to only 20 per cent profit.

What is the charge?

The construction of Maharashtra Sadan was to cost Rs 13.5 crore. But it increased to 50 crores. The ACB had alleged that Bhujbal had received a bribe of Rs 13.5 crore from the company and a profit of Rs 190 crore from the Maharashtra Sadan and other public sector projects.

Court observations

It was imperative for Chamankar Enterprises to assess the profits from the Maharashtra House contract and the losses incurred by the government due to this scam. But the ACB official has done it himself. Therefore, the court also stated in the order that it was unfair and illegal.

To appeal in High Court: Damania

Chhagan will appeal to the High Court against the acquittal of Bhujbal. Complainant and social activist Anjali Damania said that the state government and the Bribery Prevention Department should also appeal to the High Court against the acquittal of Bhujbal and other accused.

What happened

The special court questioned the ACB’s investigation a month ago, noting that the ACB had observed the case with specific intent and haste. The Chamankar family, a public sector engineer and developer, was also acquitted by a special court. Bhujbal and his family had then filed an application in a special court seeking acquittal. The special court on Thursday acquitted Bhujbal on his plea.

Truth is never defeated. I was slandered with hatred. The results made it clear that the allegations against me were false. Some people had decided to harass. But we got out of it. – Chhagan Bhujbal,Minister of Food and Civil Supplies

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