Maharashtra: Opposition Parties Boycott Assembly Session Over BJP Leader Girish Mahajan’s Alleged Gangster Links

Maharashtra: Opposition Parties Boycott Assembly Session Over BJP Leader Girish Mahajan’s Alleged Gangster Links

The leader of the Opposition in the House and the Shiv Sena (UBT) member Ambadas Danve on Monday asked the government to sack rural development minister Girish Mahajan for attending the marriage of international terrorist Dawood Ibrahim’s niece in Nashik in May, 2017

Ramu BhagwatUpdated: Monday, December 18, 2023, 06:36 PM IST
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Maharashtra Assembly | File

The opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi on Monday boycotted the day's proceedings in the state legislative council after turning tables on the government accusing its senior minister Girish Mahajan of having gangster links. This was in sequel to the government's decision last week to appoint a special investigative team to probe Shiv Sena (UBT) Nashik unit head Sudhakar Badgujar's association with gangster and Dawood Ibrahim's sharpshooter Salim Kutta.

The leader of the Opposition in the House and the Shiv Sena (UBT) member Ambadas Danve on Monday asked the government to sack rural development minister Girish Mahajan for attending the marriage of international terrorist Dawood Ibrahim’s niece in Nashik in May, 2017.

CM Shinde must sack Mahajan: Oppn

The opposition leader said that if Mahajan does not resign, then chief minister Eknath Shinde must sack him.

Last week MLA Nitish Rane had presented video clips and photos of Badgujar dancing with Salim Kutta at a party in May 2017 while the latter was on parole.

Raising the issue aggressively, NCP member Eknath Khadse demanded immediate dismissal of Mahajan and an inquiry through SIT in the matter as he levelled the serious allegation against his old political foe Mahajan. 

“If the state government can set up a special investigation team  to probe the alleged links between  Badgujar and Salim Kutta, a convict in the 1993 serial bomb blast case, then why not an inquiry be constituted against the minister?” he asked, waving the purported pictures of Mahajan with alleged gangsters.

Danve supported Khadse and despite chairperson Neelam Gorhe raising objections to the way the matter was raised without a prior notice, named the minister." He said when a similar allegation was raised in the lower house against Badgujar, the government had acted swiftly and so it should follow suit and take the same action against the minister after sacking him," Danve said.

Gorhe repeatedly tried in vain to stop Khadse and Danve and said she had granted them permission to air their contention  in good faith since the notice they pressed under section 289 did not name the minister. She also warned them that she would strike off from records the mention of the minister's name. Senior Sena (UBT) member Anil Parab also vehemently demanded strict action against Mahajan for "hobnobbing with anti-national elements."

House adjourned

As the opposition members persisted in their demand for Mahajan's resignation and SIT probe against him, Gorhe adjourned the house twice -for ten minutes first and then for 20 minutes. 

Later, talking to media persons, Mahajan said the allegations against him by Khadse were baseless and uttered out of  personal animosity. "Khadse is a frustrated man  and lost his bearings after severe political and financial setbacks. He is liable to pay the revenue department Rs167 crore for irregularities he indulged in while in government. He is mentally disturbed and therefore making such wild allegations," said Mahajan.

He said the incident, and pictures Khadse was referring to were nine years old. Elaborating, he said he had attended the marriage ceremony of a relative of Sheher-e-khatib of Nashik, a social figure. Some 20,000 people were attending it as the Sheher-e-khatib had lent a helping hand during Kumbh celebrations in Nashik  some nine years ago.

"Political leaders across parties were attending the event. Later the police had probed the matter to see if any  unscrupulous persons  had been present at the event. They found nothing objectionable and the matter was closed. I am not aware of Salim Kutta's presence there," said Mahajan.

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