Current Affairs

Court directs ACB to file reply on RTI Activist Case on Speaker

Judge Anuja Prabhudessai of the Special Court under the Prevention of Corruption Act today directed the Anti- Corruption Branch to file their reply by Feb 28th to the petition filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues seeking directions to the ACB to immediately register an F.I.R. against Speaker of Goa Assembly Rajendra Arlekar in the disproportionate assets case.

The ACB today once again sought time stating that the Government had just appointed Adv. Guruprasad Kirtani as the Special Government counsel in the case.

Adv. Rodrigues today drew Judge Prabhudessai’a attention that the ACB was intentionally dragging the preliminary inquiry for almost a month which was in violation of the Supreme Court directives that requires the preliminary inquiry to be completed within a week.

Urging the Court to monitor the investigation of the case, Adv. Rodrigues further accused the ACB was shielding Rajendra Arlekar in violation of the law.  

In his petition Adv. Aires Rodrigues has drawn the attention of the Court that by a sale deed dated 26th August last year Speaker Rajendra Arlekar purchased from a Delhi based journalist Dharmanand Kamat the 500 sq mt plot at Porvorim on a payment of Rs 72 lakhs and that the sale deed does not reveal the mode of payment as to whether the amount paid by Rajendra Arlekar was in cash, cheque or draft.

Adv. Rodrigues has in his petition also stated that besides the 72 lakhs Rajendra Arlekar also paid an amount of Rs 2,52,000 towards stamp duty and a further Rs 2,16,280 as registration and processing fees of that Sale deed.

Pointing out that in an affidavit filed by Rajendra Arlekar on 9th February 2012 he had shown his income for the year 2010-2011 as Rs 2,76,671 and that of his wife Anagha Deshpande Arlekar who is a school teacher as Rs 5,87,186, Adv Rodrigues has stated that the purchase of the plot now for 72 lakhs by Rajendra Arlekar was clearly disproportionate to his last known source of income.

Adv. Rodrigues has also pointed out to the ACB that Rajendra Arlekar on 9th February 2012 in his affidavit before the Goa’s Chief Electoral officer had shown his total liabilities by way of loans etc as Rs 30,54,314 and further liabilities by way of Government dues as Rs 2,64,734 but that his statement of assets and liabilities filed on 31st July 2013 before the Goa Lokayukta does not show any liabilities.

Adv. Rodrigues has demanded that Arlekar should explain as to how within a short span of just over a year after becoming Speaker of the Goa Legislative Assembly he was able to clear his huge liabilities of Rs 30,54,314 and also liabilities by way of Government dues of Rs 2,64,734.

Drawing the ACB’s attention that Rajendra Arlekar in his affidavit on 9th February 2012 had shown his total income for the year 2010-2011 as a mere Rs 2,76,671, Adv. Rodrigues has alleged that it prima facie reveals that Rajendra Arlekar was concealing the real income being earned by him from his HP petrol pump dealership “Om Shree Vetobaa” at Vasco.

Adv. Rodrigues has also sought that the ACB investigate as to how the total income of Rajendra Arlekar’s wife Anagha Deshpande Arlekar who is a school teacher which was Rs 5,87,186 in 2010-2011 had shot up to Rs 9,32,278 in the year 2012-2013

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