February 28, 2009 1:08:00 am
A Sessions court on Friday acquitted six persons,including a builder,City Survey Department officials and an architect in a 31-year-old case of Floor Space Index (FSI) violations. Two of the six acquitted died in 2007.
The case dates back to 1978 when six people- C Bijlani,a city based builder,S C Patil,a city survey officer,P D Dhairyavar,an architect,D Joshi,a record keeper, P G Sawant,a clerk,and V Y Desai,a surveyor were accused of tampering with the official documents and forging FSI.
According to the prosecution,Bijlani,approached the City Survey Department to measure a piece of land. Based on the survey the FSI allotted to the builder was increased from 1210 square metres to 1377 square metres. Thereafter,the builder approached the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation for an approval for the amended plan. However,on a tip off from a BMC worker,the FSI cell of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) of Mumbai police set up a trap. After raids were conducted it allegedly found several instances of violation of FSI norms by builders in alleged connivance with officials from the City Survey Department.
Initially only Bijlani was arrested,however,after investigation five others were booked in the case.
Three decades later when the case came up for hearing in 2007,with two of the accused- Sawant and Desai already dead,the prosecution claimed to have lost most of the case papers. Four of the six men who faced trial were acquitted on Friday due to lack of evidence.
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