Mumbai: Maharashtra’s Lokayukta M L Tahaliyani on September 14, closed investigations into a complaint of misuse of office against Shiv Sena minister Ravindra Waikar. The Lokayukta ruling made no case against him, which Sanjay Nirupam, President of Mumbai Regional Congress Committee(MRCC) said he will contest in the Bombay High Court, once they get the copy.
On August 19, 2016, Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam had filed a petition before Tahaliyani alleging that Waikar, the Minister of State for Housing, had misused his office for an alleged unauthorised construction in Mumbai’s Aarey colony, which Waikar represents.
After a year, the Lokayukta gave Waikar a clean chit in the matter. The Congress chief had also accused the trust promoted by the minister’s kin of usurping public land. These allegations were also ruled out too.
In June this year, the trust surrendered the possession of the gymnasium to the collector’s office. Observing that there was a need to regulate such constructions in future, Tahaliyani ruled out the complaint against Waikar. “The truth has come out finally,” said Waikar, maintaining that he had recommended the construction of the gymnasium on the demand of locals.
While Waikar has now threatened to file a defamation case against Nirupam if the latter did not “issue a public apology”, Nirupam has said he plans to contest the Lokayukta’s order in the Bombay High Court. In the build-up to Mumbai municipal elections, the Mumbai Congress had earlier released some official papers on June 16, alleging that Waikar had undertaken illegal construction activity inside the Aarey colony an accusation the Shiv Sena minister had denied.