Adarsh scam: I will not quit, says Ramanand Tiwari

Mumbai: Maharashtra Information Commissioner Ramanand Tiwari, who is one of the tainted former bureaucrats in the Adarsh housing society scam, met the Maharashtra Governor today and said he will not quit.

"I will challenge the appeal for my suspension in by the state government...today I have met the Governor and presented my side of the story. I am not going to step down. I have told the Governor about my case," Tiwari said.

"I do accept that during my tenure in the UDD a lot of files came to me for clearances and I cleared them. The decision to clear land reservation and land transfers is a decision taken by the state and not by me. I have not given any environmental clearance as my department has nothing to do with the environmental clearance. Just because my son has got a flat that does not mean I have cleared the file to get him a flat. I am not under any pressure by the state to resign. I had applied for leave but my leave was not granted," he added.

The Governor can now recommend the former bureaucrat's removal to the Supreme Court.

The apex court will then conduct an inquiry, pending which, Tiwari can be suspended.

Tiwari was under pressure from the government to quit as Information Commissioner, but he refused and instead sent across a leave application to Sankaranarayanan, who rejected it.

Subhash Lalla, another retired IAS officer, had resigned as member of the State Human Rights Commission on January 3 after the names of his kin figured as beneficiaries in the Adarsh Society meant for war heroes and defence personnel.

Lalla was posted in the Chief Minister's office when the scam-hit Society's files were being processed.

Tiwari headed the state's Urban Development Department when some crucial clearances, including raise in Floor Space Index, was granted to the Adarsh Society. His son too owns a flat in the 31-storey building in upmarket Colaba.