Goa ashram row: 'Swamiji' says will react at right time over demolition

Panaji, May 19 (IANS): After receiving a demolition notice of his ashram in Goa, Raaj Shashibhushan Pandey -- who is believed to be a 'Swamiji' or 'Baba', has said that he will present the facts around his ashram -- which has become a subject of controversy -- at the right time.

"I have all the management (in regards to construction of Ashram) and at the right time I will place it before everyone," Pandey told IANS when asked if he had a construction license.

Pandey, however, was reluctant to answer questions pertaining to the permissions required.

Around three permanent structures of ashram that have been constructed at Vape-Sadolxem in Poinguinim village of South Goa by Pandey, have been served a demolition notice.

The ashram, which has become a subject of controversy over environmental issues, and also for not obtaining a construction license, has been slapped with a demolition notice.

Forest officials speaking to IANS said that they have booked him for felling of trees. "We have registered a case against him for felling of trees, he will be summoned for the inquiry," a Forest official said.

According to local panchayat members, though the owner of these structures has not obtained any 'No Objection Certificate' from them to start construction, the structures are already at the completion level.

Speaking to IANS, Poinguinim Sarpanch, Savita Tawadkar said that they have not received any application from the owner of the structures, who is believed to be 'Swamiji' or 'Baba'.

"He had taken temporary permission to erect huts from the erstwhile Panchayat body but he has not taken permission for permanent structures from new body. Hence, we have served him stop notice and even now demolition notice," she said.

Mahesh Naik, a panchayat member, said that they have not issued any NOC for obtaining power connection or water connection. "He may be getting water from water tankers or well in his area," Naik said.

Deputy Collector from Canacona in South Goa has served show cause notice to Raaj Shashibhushan Pandey and has asked him to appear before court on June 7.

"We are not aware of where he has come from. Some say that he is from Uttar Pradesh and has good links with our politicians, hence he could construct the ashram without obtaining a construction license," a local resident said.



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Title: Goa ashram row: 'Swamiji' says will react at right time over demolition

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