The scam-hit Adarsh Housing Society today sought from the Defence Ministry, documents supporting its claim of ownership of land in posh South Mumbai where the 31-storey building stands, failing which they threatened to launch a hunger strike. In a letter to Union Defence Minister A K Anthony, the Society members urged him to furnish documents or make it public within a month or else face agitation.
“All these days, the Defence Ministry has been indulging in a malicious drive of misleading the country and denying to part with documents pertaining to title of the land in question. We call upon you to do so and submit copy of the documents showing title of the land,” the letter states.
Asking the minister to come clean on the issue of ownership of the land, the letter says, “You (Anthony) and your department have been wrongly blaming us for grabbing defence land meant for Kargil war veterans and widows. But did you as a minister before claiming title over the land in question, make enquiries or see any of the documents which present a totally different picture regarding the status of the ownership of the land?”
Some of the documents relied upon by the Society include a December 1958 letter written by the Army to the Maharashtra government seeking for transfer of unclaimed land in Block VI of Colaba where Adarsh building stands; the state government’s reply to the letter in February 1964 refusing to transfer the land and letter from the army headquarters conveyed to the local military authorities asking them to drop proposal of transfer of land.
“Despite all these documents and the judicial commission’s finding that the land belongs to the Maharashtra government, the Ministry is not ready to accept the truth. You are now called upon to furnish documents supporting your claim,” the letter said.
The Society has asked the minister to furnish any document showing that the Ministry of Defence had acquired the land, possession certificate and title documents if any.
Levelling allegations against former Army Chief V K Singh, the Society said, “General V K Singh has misguided you (Anthony) to settle his personal scores with General Deepak Kapoor. You have been merely toeing his line without checking the facts.”
The letter is signed by the managing committee of the Society comprising eight persons including R C Thakur, retired brigadier T K Sinha and former MLA KanhaiyalalGidwani’s son Kailash.