In a mass rally comprising over 4,500 people, the people appointed a People’s Commission Of Inquiry to investigate into the illegalities of Shivalik Ventures in the Golibar Redevelopment project. It has on it Chief Justice of Supreme Court (Retd) Suresh Hosbet, architect Chandershekar Prabhu, author Vidyadhar Date, filmmaker Ashok Pandit and academician Amita Bhide.
A public meeting of the residents of Golibar slum, as well as people affected by Slum Rehabilitation projects in other parts of Mumbai, was held at Golibar on 6th Feb 2011. It was addressed by Medha Patkar, Maruti Bapkar (Corporator from PCMC), Advocate Thakur, Jameela Begum, Hyder Imam and others. More than 4500 people from Golibar were present.
Medhatai Patkar spoke about Unitech’s fifty percent stake in Shivalik Ventures for the Golibar project. The sources of this funding were revealed incidentally during the CBI investigation of the 2G Spectrum scam. Lehmann Brothers transferred Rs. 740 crore to Unitech for its joint venture with Shivalik. The transaction process is under investigation by the CBI & the Central Bureau of Direct Taxes.
Later, part of the money was arranged as a “loan” to Unitech by Nira Radia, the notorious corporate PR agent, from Tata Realty. Return of the “advance money/ loan” to Tata Realty from Unitech-Shivalik is a fraud to the tune of Rs. 650 crore rupees.
The total assets of Shivalik are worth a few thousand crore rupees today, while until a couple of years ago they were worth Rs 53 lakhs. The company has changed its name several times.
How Shivalik Ventures managed to access so much money, and by what means, must be further investigated by the State and Union Government. Towards this end a PEOPLE’S COMMISSION OF INQUIRY has been instituted by Medhatai Patkar, Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan and many supporters from outside Golibar, as well people from across Golibar.
On the 2nd, 3rd, 4th of Feb, MHADA and police came for demolitions despite a High Court order to the police to complete the investigation into the forgery case against the builder. The residents of Ganesh Krupa Society had moved the Court for this order, and in fact, the judgement was in their favour (ordering custodial interrogation of the Directors of Shivalik Ventures) and yet 29 more houses were demolished. The builder still walks free.