In 2011, an internal audit of the city housing inspection department was conducted after an inspector claimed that certain property owners were receiving special treatment. Ompal Chauhan, the Wichita slumlord Kansas Exposed has been writing about for several days, was one of those property owners.
The Wichita Eagle has written several stories about Ompal “Om” Chauhan over the years, mostly around the time he ran for office. Chauhan is well-known to city inspectors and has an extensive history of city code violations. According to the Eagle, between 1999 and 2010 Chauhan had over 60 cases opened and closed on 31 of his properties.
The audit did not confirm that Chauhan had received special treatment, despite the high number of city violations his properties have received. Chauhan blames the poor conditions of the homes he rents on his tenants and criminals. Chauhan told the Eagle in 2010 that his homes are often damaged by people he evicts, and that most of the homes he purchases are in bad condition to begin with.
Angie Williams, the mother who first reported Chauhan to Kansas Exposed because he threatened to and then did actually report her to DCF because she complained about the conditions of her home, says she has reported Chauhan three times, and has never had her calls returned by the inspector, a man named “Dan”, and that no action has been taken. Williams says she believes Chauhan does receive special treatment.
This is the number Williams was given to reach Dan, the housing inspector:
Regardless of the circumstances, Chauhan has a legal responsibility to provide safe living conditions for his tenants, and recent stories bring his credibility into question.
Recent stories on Ompal Chauhan: