After the Adarsh Society scam in Mumbai, three separate investigations of land grabs have been initiated in the Army that show a nexus between civic authorities and top Army officers.
Defence land and defence-related land in Kandivali, Malad and Juhu areas, costing upto Rs. 70-80 crore, is suspected to have been usurped by a builder lobby. In some cases, no-objection certificates (NoCs) were forged to obtain clearances for residential and commercial buildings.
Documents available with NDTV have revealed that a 6000-square-meter plot, adjoining the Central Ordinance Depot (COD) of the military, was made available for a 15-storey residential complex in Malad. Access to this plot is only through Defence land and documents suggest that the permission to develop the plot was granted by an officer in a letter dated January 2009.
On the basis of this letter, the Mumbai Municipality granted permission to build the complex.
The COD later denied issuing such a letter. This was followed by a stop-work notice by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in June 2010.
Alleged harassment of some junior officers who objected to the what they called unscrupulous methods of giving away defence or defence-related land is also under probe. Retd Lt Gen Tejinder Singh and a serving officer, Maj Gen RK Hooda, are under the scanner.
The role of Defence Estate Officers, a civilian organization under the Ministry of Defence, is also under scrutiny.