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Goa Speaker's disproportionate assets case adjourned to Nov 12

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The disproportionate assets case against Rajendra Arlekar, Speaker of the Goa Legislative Assembly was adjourned to November 12 for further arguments by Special Judge under the Prevention of Corruption B.P Deshpande on Friday.

Petitioner and activist lawyer Aires Rodrigues on Friday drew the Court’s attention that by a sale deed dated August 26 last year.

Speaker Arlekar purchased a 500 sq mt plot at Porvorim in north Goa for Rs.72 lakhs and that the sale deed did not reveal the mode of payment while he had also paid a further Rs.2,52,000 towards stamp duty and a Rs.2,16,280 as registration and processing fees of that sale deed.

Pointing out that in an affidavit filed by Mr. Arlekar before Goa’s Chief Electoral officer on February 9, 2012 he had shown his income for the year 2010-2011 as Rs.2,76,671 and that of his wife Anagha Arlekar, a school teacher as Rs.5,87,186, Adv Rodrigues argued that the purchase of the plot by him was clearly disproportionate to his last known source of income. Moreover, he submitted that it prima facie reveals that Mr. Arlekar has concealed the real income earned by him from his HP petrol pump dealership “Om Shree Vetobaa” located at Vasco in south Goa.

Adv. Rodrigues further submitted to the Court that Mr. Arlekar in his affidavit in February 2012 had shown his liabilities by way of loans as Rs 30,54,314 and further liabilities by way of Government dues as Rs.2,64,734 but that in his statement of assets and liabilities filed on July 31, 2013 before the Goa Lokayukta, his liabilities were shown as nil.

Adv. Rodrigues also sought that the ACB investigate as to how the total income of Mr. Arlekar’s wife Anagha 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.

Seeking directions of the Court that Mr. Arlekar be booked under Section 13 (1) (d) & (e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 and other provisions of IPC, Adv. Rodrigues also sought that the Court monitor the investigation as Mr. Arlekar was politically very influential.

Accusing the ACB of dragging their feet in the preliminary enquiry that was registered against Mr. Arlekar on January 30 this year, Adv. Rodrigues urged the Judge to refer the matter to the High Court for contempt proceedings against ACB officials as though they were duty bound to complete the preliminary enquiry within a maximum of six weeks they were willfully delaying it for over nine months in rank contempt of the Supreme Court directives in such cases.

Significantly, Mr. Arlekar's detractors in the BJP as well as in the RSS think tank in Goa used the issue of this case while favouring Mr. Laxmikant Parsekar as Chief Minister to replace Mr. Manohar Parrikar, on Saturday.

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Printable version | Jan 30, 2020 12:24:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/goa-speakers-disproportionate-assets-case-adjourned-to-nov-12/article6580357.ece

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