THE residents of Oberoi Splendor Co Operative Housing Society have alleged that crores of rupees have been misappropriated from the maintenance accounts of the one of the largest housing complexes on JVLR along with other blatant irregularities. The yearly collection of the Oberoi Splendor CHS is close to rupees 25 crores.
Complaints regarding the corruption and fraud since 2016 were not heeded to earlier by the co-operative officials since the managing committee was indulging in corruption through legal firms and consultants siphoning off the funds of the society.
In June 2022, T.S. Natrajan on behalf of many members of the society made a complaint to the Deputy District Registrar, Mumbai through advocate Mohit Bhardwaj to conduct re-audit of the society accounts and de-empanel the auditors who simply sign the audit reports prepared by the managing committee and ignoring explicit complaints made to that auditor.
The main reasons mentioned in the complaint petition were that :
1. About Rs 4 crores of society maintenance funds has been used for personal legal expenses of the managing committee, their friends and for corruption purposes.
2. About Rs 25 Crores payable by the builder to his vendors was paid by managing committee, that too without lawful approval. That 25 crores, today is valued at Rs 53 crores.
3. Club House deposit from builder was not collected, which is valued at over Rs 32 crores currently.
4. Expenses over rupees one lakh were routinely made without prior approval of the General Body amounting to Rs 2.37 crores.
5. Many members were obstructed from using society services but were still charged by managing committee to teach such members a lesson clearly cheating those members who have paid for those denied services elsewhere.
6. Committee members signed a collusive consent term with the builder causing a whopping loss of FSI to the members amounting to several hundred crores.
In July 2023, after hearing all parties, the Deputy Registrar Co-operative societies of K-East ward Sanjay Nikam recommended that re-audit be carried out. Based on this recommendation the Deputy District Registrar, Mumbai R. Veer wrote to the District Special Auditor Class 1 to appoint an auditor.
On August 23, 2023 the District Special Auditor Class 1 Chandrashekar Balaji Rao Ghavankar has nominated Manisha P Patil to conduct re-audit for the Financial Years 18-19, 20-21 and 21-22.
Residents have also alleged that despite such glaring issues, the auditor Priyesh Khirad, turned a blind eye and avoided informing the registrar and proposing the registration of F.I.R, despite such huge amounts being involved.
Speaking to ABI, one resident questioned “Which housing society can afford to spend one crore rupees on legal expenses every year, year after year? A resident said, “She is thankful to Deputy Registrar S.V. Nikam for unbiased adjudication of these complaints and hopes that all manipulations shall now be exposed by the appointed auditor.”
Another resident said, “Our quarterly maintenance would have been reduced by over 30% had such funds not been misused, but now it is being increased.”
Some members have made police complaints, and some have even filed complaint with the Andheri court to ensure that hard earned money of flat owners is not misappropriated further specially on personal litigation of committee members which is concealed through legal firms and consultants.
“Police assistance is also required to know who assisted and how in concealing these misappropriated amounts” said advocate Mohit Bhardwaj.