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Balganga scam: why no FIR against ministers, asks defence


Thane:  Opposing the police’s application for the custody of an accused official in the Balganga irrigation project scam, his lawyer today asked why no FIR was lodged against the erstwhile ministers.

Advocate Shailesh Sadekar, the lawyer of Vijay Kasat, section engineer with Konkan Irrigation Development Corporation, argued before special judge for ACB cases V V Bambarde here that a scam of this magnitude would not have been possible without “ministerial sanction”.

Why the former ministers of irrigation department were not named in the FIR, he asked.

Kasat had no decision-making power and it was the higher-ups who took decisions, advocate Sadekar said.

ACB had earlier said that it was yet to recover some crucial documents related to the scam from the accused.

The accounts of FA Enterprises and Construction — whose owners have been arrested in the case – showed that over Rs 4.29 crore had been paid towards travels of the officials of KIDC and police wanted to find out who the beneficiaries were, it said.

The firm got a contract related to the project though its turn-over was quite small, it said.

After hearing the arguments, the judge remanded Kasat in police custody till September 9. Abid Khatri and Zahid Khatri, partners in FA Enterprises, were remanded in police custody till September 8.

The three had been arrested yesterday, taking the total number of arrested accused to five.

On August 25, ACB registered an FIR against 11 persons for causing a loss of Rs 92 crore to Maharashtra government in the construction of dam over Balganga river in Raigad.

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